The Black Collar Crime Series relies on public news stories and publicly available information for its content. If any incorrect information is found, please contact Bruce Gerencser. Nothing in this post should be construed as an accusation of guilt. Those accused of crimes are innocent until proven guilty.
Fake Dr. Todd Coontz, pastor of Dominion Family Worship Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida (church’s website is a parked domain) and CEO of Rockwealth Ministries stands accused of “failing to pay taxes and filing false tax returns, as well as hiding assets that were paid for by donations.”
A televangelist and so-called “prosperity preacher” with ties to Charlotte has been indicted by a federal grand jury.
Pastor Todd Coontz is accused of failing to pay taxes and filing false tax returns, as well as hiding assets that were paid for by donations. The U.S. attorney said, “This is a classic example of, ‘Do as I say, not as I do.’”
As a cable TV evangelist, Coontz promised financial miracles for people who sent money to his ministry.
“You need to plant the $273 recovery seed. I’m only going to give you two to three minutes to respond,” Coontz once told his viewers.
Coontz posted videos on Twitter as recently as Wednesday, promising financial blessings to the faithful.
“Suddenly miracles are happening. I want to work with your faith for quick things, swift things,” Coontz said in the video.
In February 2013, a Channel 9 investigation revealed some of Coontz’s own “blessings,” which included a $1.38 million condo at a building on the corner of Providence and Sharon Amity roads. In the garage of that building was his Ferrari and his Maserati.
A federal criminal indictment on Thursday pointed to those exact same assests in Channel 9’s investigation.
The condo was purchased by Coontz’s Rockwealth Ministries as “parsonage” for him, according to the indictment. The court documents said the cars were also titled in the name of the ministry.
The U.S. Secret Service started looking into Coontz and Rockwealth Ministries as a result of the Channel 9 investigation.
The indictment revealed delinquent tax returns from as far back as 2000. From 2010-2013, Coontz owed more than $326,000 in taxes.
Investigators said he also hid his income from the Internal Revenue Service by cashing checks he received from churches and ministries for travel and speaking engagements and then claiming that same travel as business expenses.
The indictment also revealed he used business funds to pay for personal expenses, such as more than $227,000 for clothes, $140,000 at restaurants and more than 400 charges at movie theaters.
Coontz’s defense attorney, Mark Foster, said the indictment makes allegations but isn’t proof.
“He’s otherwise is a good man,” Foster said. “He’s tried to do the right thing all his life and he has no criminal record. We’re going to fight this out.”
Statement from Coontz’s attorney:
“William Todd Coontz has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Charlotte on several criminal tax charges. Coontz unequivocally asserts his innocence of these charges.
A grand jury is tasked only with determining whether there is probable cause to believe that a defendant has committed a federal crime. The government presents its evidence to the grand jury in secret and the defense cannot be present. Thus, the grand jury’s indictment of Coontz is not a determination of guilt — it is merely a preliminary finding that is necessary before the federal government can prosecute someone.
The government has chosen to make a statement to the press about Mr. Coontz’s indictment. It must be remembered that Todd Coontz is presumed innocent. Todd Coontz has retained veteran federal criminal defense attorney Mark Foster to represent him in this case and will vigorously defend himself against these charges. Todd Coontz has always endeavored to follow the law and to be a good citizen, father and minister. He trusted others to manage his finances and taxes for him and was shocked to find out he was under criminal investigation by the IRS.
We expect that after hearing all the evidence, a jury will fully vindicate Mr. Coontz by finding him not guilty of all charges.
Mark Foster, Attorney at Law”
The Rockwealth Ministries BIO (bullshit) page for Coontz states:
Pastor, Evangelist, Television Host, Author,Humanitarian, Philanthropist, Businessman are some words others use to describe Dr. Todd Coontz.
Dr. Todd Coontz’s life of service to God began at age 10 when he dedicated his life to the Lord at the altar in a small country church. “I’ll go where You want me to go, God … I’ll say what You tell me to say… I’ll do whatever You want! I am yours!” The following night he preached his first sermon on Moses and the Ten Commandments, having just watched the classic movie by the same title. The prayer he prayed in that little chapel changed the course of his life and launched him into more than four decades of ministry and preaching the gospel around the world!
As the Founder/Pastor of Dominion Family Worship Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, he proclaims the message of the gospel and The Great Commission to the body of Christ. He loves God’s people and is committed to building a church where everyone is welcome. His ministry extends beyond the local church through his daily television broadcast, FAITH NOW, which reaches 90 million homes in the US and airs globally in over 200 countries. Millions have been touched, inspired, educated, and motivated to become everything God desires for them through his multi-faceted ministry.
A published author with more than 10 books and several best-selling titles, Dr. Coontz ministers effectively on the topics of faith, finances, and building people. As a noted faith teacher and captivating communicator, Dr. Coontz is passionate about the principles of Biblical Economics outlined in the Covenant found in Deuteronomy 28:1-14. His objective is to teach God’s people how to qualify, receive and manage wealth based upon Scriptural principles, including those from Deuteronomy 8:18.
In addition to his many endeavors, he finds time to travel internationally with some of the most renown “Generals of Faith” and can be seen on the largest television networks, including TBN, Daystar, INSP, Word Network, and more. He is also the Founder of RockWealth International Ministries, the Owner of Legacy Media, Inc., a media and publishing company, and holds an Honorary Doctor of Ministry Degree from Kingsway University.
Dr. Todd Coontz is a minister of the gospel with a heart for God’s people … a humanitarian committed to feeding underprivileged children … and a man of God who lives what he preaches!
An April 3, 2018 WBTV-3 story reports:
The trial is underway for a former Charlotte minister who was indicted for reportedly failing to pay his taxes.
According to prosecutors,Todd Coontz skirted the IRS for years. Federal prosecutors say Coontz allegedly failed to pay taxes and filed false tax returns.
He was the minister of Rock Wealth International Ministries from 2010 to 2014, the Charlotte Observer reported.
Coontz’s website states he is a pastor, evangelist, television host, author, humanitarian, philanthropist and a businessman.
From 2000 to 2014, Coontz consistently failed to make timely payments on his taxes and sometimes owed hundreds of thousands of dollars, investigators said. According to the Observer, Coontez under-reported his income on his tax returns “by not including as income payments made by his corporations and ministry for his personal expenses.”
Coontz also would allegedly get people to make checks out to him personally for speaking engagements, the Observer reported.
The Observer reported that Coontz “enjoyed a life of luxury” and claimed his $1.5 million condo and his luxury vehicles as business expenses. In addition, he allegedly also claimed a boat, clothing purchases, entertainment purchases and $140,000 in meals as business expenses, the Observer reported.
When announcing the charges in 2017, U.S. Attorney Jill Rose said this case was “a classic example of ‘Do as I say, not as I do.'”
“As a minister, Coontz preached about receiving and managing wealth, yet he failed to keep his own finances in order. Coontz will now receive a first-hand lesson in ‘rendering unto Caesar’ that which is due,” Rose said.
The Observer reported that Coontz wrote several books about finances.
Coontz’s lawyer, Mark Foster, said he “always endeavored to follow the law and to be a good citizen, father, and minister. He trusted others to manage his finances and taxes for him and was shocked to find out he was under criminal investigation by the IRS,” the Observer reported.
“We expect that after hearing all the evidence, a jury will fully vindicate Mr. Coontz by finding him not guilty of all charges,” Foster told the Observer in 2017.
Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.
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