Todd Coontz, a former Charlotte, North Carolina preacher who mixed the gospel with financial advice for his flock, has been charged with several counts of federal tax fraud and evasion. Coontz attempted to write off a $1.5 million condo and a fleet of luxury vehicles off as business expenses, while also filing false tax returns.
The Charlotte Observer reports:
William Todd Coontz enjoyed a life of luxury, federal prosecutors contend, by claiming as business expenses the $1.5 million condo he and his family lived in as their parsonage and the luxury vehicles they drove, including three BMWs, two Ferraris, a Maserati and a Land Rover.
He also claimed a Regal 2500 boat, 400 charges at movie theaters, $228,000 in clothing purchases and $140,000 in meals and other entertainment as business expenses with no proof the expenses were for business, according to a federal criminal bill of indictment returned by a grand jury in Charlotte on Thursday.
He spent $21,000 at designer jewelry store David Yurman and $14,000 at Diamonds Direct jewelry store, the indictment said.
The indictment charges the 50-year-old Coontz with three counts of failure to pay taxes and four counts of aiding and assisting in the filing of false tax returns. Coontz, who now lives in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., has been ordered to appear on a summons in U.S. District Court in Charlotte.
“As a minister, Coontz preached about receiving and managing wealth, yet he failed to keep his own finances in order,” Jill Westmoreland Rose, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina, said in a public statement regarding the matter last Friday. “Coontz will now receive a first-hand lesson in ‘rendering unto Caesar’ that which is due.”
Coontz fleeced members of the Rock Wealth International Ministries by promising prosperity via a check-writing scam that prosecutors say went to fund his lavish lifestyle.
The 50-year-old Coontz currently resides in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
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