“Bling Bishop” Lamor Whitehead, who first drew worldwide attention when he was robbed while livestreaming a sermon in July 2022, is facing new federal fraud charges. Citing Manhattan Federal Court documents, the Daily News reports that Whitehead “told a bank his business had $2 million in its coffers when it had less than $10.”
The Rolls Royce-driving Whitehead—arrested in December last year and charged with embezzling from one of his congregation members’ retirement fund—applied for a quarter-million dollar business loan in the summer of 2018, reports the News. He didn’t get the loan, which was good, given that prosecutors allege that Whitehead made up some vital documents to support the loan application he filled out online.
The new indictment against Whitehead states that his documents were for “a bank account that did not in fact exist.” They also made it look like his company, Anointing Management Services LLC, had over $2 million in assets, even though “during that time period [the business] had an average ending balance of less than ten dollars.”
Despite not obtaining the 2018 loan, Whitehead allegedly tried again in 2019, using faked documents as part of an application for a $1.3 million mortgage on his home in Paramus, New Jersey, described by the Daily News as a “six-bedroom, seven-bath…mansion.”
Bishop Whitehead was already facing charges that included fleecing a member of his flock to the tune of $90,000. He is currently free on a $500,000 bond.
Bishop Lamor Whitehead, known as the ‘Bling Bishop’ for his lavish lifestyle and clothing, allegedly faked bank documents to help secure financing for a home in Georgia.
Whitehead, pastor of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Georgia, reportedly submitted paperwork to a lender that falsely said he had $2 million on deposit with Bank of America. Whitehead was reportedly granted a $1.5 million mortgage.
Whitehead denies the allegations, claiming that he has no knowledge of how the documents were created and is unaware of who submitted them. While the investigation is ongoing, Whitehead is facing civil fraud charges.
The news of Whitehead’s alleged fraud has rocked the Christian community, causing many to question why a pastor of such an influential church would resort to such fraudulent behavior. In 2017, Whitehead had been the recipient of an award from the Gospel Music Association, underlining his high standing in the clergy.
Though Whitehead has not yet responded to allegations, he continues to call for prayer for those conducting the investigation. While the outcome is still unknown, many have expressed anger about Whitehead’s alleged actions.
The purported scandal also comes at a time when many Americans are struggling financially as a result of the pandemic. The mortgage loan Whitehead is accused of obtaining is indicative of a financial industry that is often unfairly biased against those living on low incomes.
At a time of deep economic insecurity, the implications of Whitehead’s alleged fraud are far-reaching. Many are making sure to keep a watchful eye on the ensuing investigation, anxious to uncover the truth of the matter and its eventual manner of resolution.