Evangelist Arrested Curbside for Condemning Homosexuality

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A former Los Angeles police officer-turned evangelist was arrested in London on Monday for publicly calling homosexuality a sin, according to Christian Newswire.

Retired Los Angeles Deputy Sheriff Tony Miano had traveled to the United Kingdom with Sports Fan Outreach International on a mission to bring the Gospel to England.

During the Wimbledon Tennis Championships, he preached about immoral living as he stood in front of the Centre Court Complex.

Click play to watch CBN News UK Correspondent Peter Wooding's report.

Miano cited homosexuality and fornication as examples of lifestyle choices that go against God's law, quoting 1 Thessalonians 4:1-12, which mentions "sexual immorality."

A passerby heard his comments and reported to the police that his statements offended her.

The result: Miano was fingerprinted, DNA samples were taken, and he was later interrogated about his what he believed.

***Click here to watch the arrest on Tony Miano's YouTube Channel.

"As the questioning started it became apparent that the interrogation was about more than the incident that took place in the street, but what I believed and how I think," Miano told The Telegraph online. "I was being interrogated about my thoughts...that is the basic definition of thought police."

"It was surreal because I was interrogated about my faith in Jesus Christ," Miano said. "I was asked if I believe that homosexuality is a sin. I was asked what portion of the Bible I was reading. I was asked if a homosexual was hungry and walked up to me, would I give them something to eat."

When asked if he would continue to same the same thing the next day, the evangelist contended that he did nothing unlawful and, if led by the Holy Spirit, he'd publicly preach the same message.

The arresting officer said Miano's affirmative reponses left him no choice but to seek prosecution. Miano was later released by another officer with no further charge, after seven hours in custody, according to the Huffington Post.

***Click here to read the entire line of questioning.

"The language I used was not homophobic, as I was not promoting fear or hatred of homosexuals," Miano said after the arrest. "I began my message by assuring the people that mine was not a message of hate but of love. I was simply explaining a passage in the Bible which speaks of sexual immorality and that people should abstain from it."

"I did not speak solely about homosexuality as a form of sexual immorality, but also about any kind of sex outside of marriage between one man and one woman, as well as lustful thoughts," he said.

"All of these are considered mainstream Christian positions and have been taught and believed by Christians for thousands of years," he argued.

Miano said the experience was disturbing.

"It was very distressing to be arrested and interrogated for openly expressing my deeply held Christian beliefs," he said.

He warned that Britain and other countries with similar laws are on a "slippery slope" toward the dissipation of free speech.

Meanwhile, Andrea Minichiello Williams, chief executive of the Christian Legal Centre, echoed Miano's prediction.

"If we continue on the current trajectory, Tony's arrest will simply be the first of many," he said. "It's clear that there is already a clampdown on freedom of speech where people publicly express mainstream Christian views on sexual ethics."

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Aisha Bascom

Aisha Bascom

CBN Internet News and Social Media Producer

Internet News and Social Media Producer