Arizona Cops Say 'Church' Really a Brothel
Even the 'mystic mother' herself faces prostitution charges in Arizona
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 10, 2011 1:10 PM CDT
That's no church, say Arizona vice cops.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – They weren't called "johns." They were "seekers." It wasn't "sex." It was a "sacred union." And those "neo-Tantric healing therapies" offered in exchange for "donations"? Better left unsaid. That's pretty much all you need to know about the Phoenix Goddess Temple, which got raided this week in Arizona and was accused of being a brothel instead of a church, report ABC News and CNN. Prosecutors have charged more than 30 people, including founder Tracy Elise. No "madame" title for her, though. It's "Mystic Mother."

"They were committing crimes under the guise of religious freedom," says a Phoenix police spokesman. "It's a sad situation when people are trying to hide behind religion and church to commit a crime."