Guru in Ariz. sweat lodge deaths released on bond

The Associated Press/February 26, 2010

Camp Verde, Arizona - A motivational speaker charged with manslaughter in the deaths of three people at an Arizona sweat lodge ceremony is out of jail.

Yavapai County Jail Sgt. Dee Huntley says James Arthur Ray gained his freedom Friday, one day after a Yavapai County Superior Court judge reduced him bond from $5 million to $525,000.

Ray had to surrender his passport. He also cannot organize, supervise or conduct any activities that might harm others.

Ray has pleaded not guilty to three counts of manslaughter stemming from an October sweat lodge ceremony that was supposed to be the highlight of a five-day "Spiritual Warrior" retreat.

Prosecutors allege Ray recklessly crammed more than 50 people inside the sweat lodge, a small heated enclosure used in traditional American Indian ceremonies.

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