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Thirteen years ago, Sean Riley, the Evangelical ex-pastor of Secret Place International Church in Humble, Texas, pleaded guilty to operating a pyramid scheme. The San Antonio Express-News reports Riley “was given two years’ deferred adjudication and was ordered to pay a $500 fine.” Today, Riley finds himself under indictment for money laundering and securities fraud.
A former pastor who in 2015 was cited by a state board has now found himself in hot water following a grand jury indictment.
Sean Patrick Riley, 50, of San Antonio, is charged with money laundering, theft and fraud sell securities. He was arrested on the charge March 22 and is being held on a collective bond of $75,000.
According to the indictment, Riley committed the crimes between Dec. 30, 2014, and Jan. 27, 2015.
The Texas State Securities Board issued a cease and desist order against Riley and his company, Petro-San Resources LLC on June 22, 2015. The order states Riley offered oil and gas investments in Texas at a single well for $7,500 and a $30,000 investment would entitle investors to a four-percent working interest and may lead to a monthly revenue of $2,112.
According to the order, the investment was not registered for sale in Texas and Riley failed to disclose that he had pleaded guilty to promoting a pyramid scheme, charged with DWI and charged with assault. The order also says Riley had been issued cease and desist orders in Pennsylvania and Georgia.
According to an article in the San Antonio Express-News, Riley was the pastor of Secret Place International Church, a Humble “storefront church and TV ministry” in 2005 and was convicted then in the pyramid scheme.