Friday, March 20, 2015

List of religious leaders convicted of crimes

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
This is a list of religious leaders who have been convicted of serious crimes before, during or after their period as a religious leader.

Violent crimes[edit]

Non-violent crimes[edit]

  • Jim Bakker - Created the PTL organization. Convicted of fraud and conspiracy charges after illegally soliciting millions of dollars from his followers.[24]
  • Hogen Fukunaga - Founder of Ho No Hana who was given a twelve-year jail sentence for fraudulently gaining 150 million yen from his followers.[25]
  • Kent Hovind (Dr. Dino) - founder of the Creation Science Evangelism ministry. Willful failure to collect, account for, and pay over Federal income taxes, knowingly structuring transactions in Federally-insured financial institutions to evade the reporting requirements, and obstructing and impeding the administration of the internal revenue laws.[26][27]
  • L. Ron Hubbard - Founder of Scientology. He was convicted of petty theft and ordered to pay a $25 fine in San Luis Obispo, California 1948[28] and in 1978 was convicted of illegal business practices, namely, making false claims about his ability to cure physical illnesses in France. He was sentenced to four years in prison, which was never served.[29][30][31][32][33]
  • Luc Jouret - A founder of the Order of the Solar Temple. He was convicted in Canadian Federal Court of conspiring to buy illegal handguns.[34]
  • Henry Lyons - Former President of National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc. Convicted for racketeering and grand theft.[35]
  • Barry Minkow - Head pastor of San Diego's Community Bible Church, and founder of the Fraud Discovery Institute, who had turned to religion and entered the ministry after release from prison for the notorious ZZZZ Best fraud, returned to prison in 2011 for further acts of securities fraud while serving as a clergyman.[36]
  • Sun Myung Moon - Leader of Unification Church, imprisoned for criminal tax fraud in the 1980s.[37]
  • Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh – later called Osho. Fined $400,000 and given a 10-year suspended sentence following a plea bargain agreement in which he made an Alford plea to (1) a charge of having concealed his intent to remain permanently in the U.S. at the time he applied for his visa extension and (2) a charge of having conspired to have followers stay illegally in the country by having them enter into sham marriages.[38] Deported from the United States.[39][40][41][42][43]


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