Self-help guru James Arthur Ray's trial begins in sweat lodge deaths
Self-help guru and author James Arthur Ray listens to opening statements at his manslaugjter trial.
March 1st, 2011
04:29 PM ET

Self-help guru James Arthur Ray's trial begins in sweat lodge deaths

Opening statements began Tuesday in the trial of self-help author and speaker James Arthur Ray, who is charged with three counts of reckless manslaughter in the death of three people at an Arizona sweat lodge.

The trial stems from a well-publicized incident that took place during a ceremony at a five-day retreat in Sedona, Arizona, on October 8, 2009. Two people died during the ceremony at Angel Valley Retreat Center. A third died nine days later, and - authorities allege - at least 15 others fell ill.

Ray faces up to 10 years in prison on each count. His attorney has argued that the author is not to blame for the deaths.

soundoff (44 Responses)
  1. John

    but oprah is always right

    March 1, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Sweat Stainz

    If you can't stand the heat, stay outta the sweat lodge.

    March 1, 2011 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |
  3. NoodleHat

    Darwinism in action.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm | Report abuse |
  4. richleblanc

    No sweat

    March 1, 2011 at 6:46 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Tooty

    It's an interesting legal question, the extent to which Ray is or isn't responsible for the deaths. You could argue either side. The victims signed up for it, but he got them very dehydrated and weak and pressured them to stay in the sweatlodge.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      Tooty u r right that they did sign up for it but did they sign up to die

      March 1, 2011 at 8:52 pm | Report abuse |
  6. wellreadone

    Lock him a sweat lodge in solitary and watch him croak.

    March 1, 2011 at 7:01 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Ralph

    What's a sweet lodge? I want one.

    March 1, 2011 at 7:08 pm | Report abuse |
  8. ugly kid


    March 1, 2011 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
  9. billy big rigger

    Leave him alone...he's just taking advantage of idiots...more oxygen for the rest of us.

    March 1, 2011 at 7:52 pm | Report abuse |
  10. LadyAngel

    Leave Oprah out of this... Did these people not know the risks?

    March 1, 2011 at 8:44 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Bob

    It's gettin hawt in here

    March 1, 2011 at 8:44 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Sean

    He deserves every bit of punishment he gets

    March 1, 2011 at 8:47 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Brian

    Give him the 30 yrs allowed cause all he is a con man who preyed on the weakness of those people who thought they were gettin help

    March 1, 2011 at 8:49 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Jeff Frank - Ohio

    Ms. Karas and Ms. Hayes, quite frankly, pardon the pun, I never heard of this guy, and cannot figure out why someone would be charged with reckless manslaugter (murder), that would purportedly is there to try and better someone else. Is the prosecutions key evidence that weak, even with two immunity witnesses, that nothing could be pubished? This person is quite confident he's innocent. He will probably be running the sttreets by Friday. 😉

    March 1, 2011 at 9:07 pm | Report abuse |
  15. marla

    grur james thought he had a secret.&money n hand.God n heaven laughed.& showed the world there is no secret.James thought he had a peace of God lol

    March 1, 2011 at 9:36 pm | Report abuse |


      March 10, 2011 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
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