Researcher Barry Bowen informs us that the Federal Government is showing a new willingness to investigate religious fraud, starting with Word of Faith prosperity preacher Benny Hinn. Here’s Bowen’s report:
Local Dallas media have pounced on the news story with reporters tweeting the latest sparse details.
Here are five points worth thinking about regarding the Hinn story.
The IRS is showing a new willingness to investigate religious financial fraud.
The IRS and other federal agencies rarely investigated religious fraud during the Obama administration. In fact, the last time a televangelist was prosecuted by the IRS occurred during George W. Bush’s presidency. Mac Hammond’s case was thrown out by the courts in November 2008 and the Obama administration failed to adopt new guidelines for church audits or to investigate numerous allegations of fraud uncovered by religious watchdog Trinity Foundation.