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Black Collar Crime: Evangelical Pastor Raymond Vliet Accused of Conning Elderly Congregants

pastor raymond vliet

Raymond Vliet, pastor of Old Beth-el General Baptist Church in Flushing, Michigan, (no web presence) stands accused of bilking an elderly parishioner out of tens of thousands of dollars. Authorities believe there could be more victims.  WNEM-5 reports:

Vliet, pastor of Old Beth-el general Baptist Church in Mt. Morris Township, faces charges of embezzling $20,000 to $50,000 from a vulnerable adult and committing a financial transaction without consent.

Sheriff Robert Pickell said the investigation started after a loan officer noticed something suspicious. Pickell said that happened when Vliet, who had power of attorney for a 91-year-old parishioner and his wife, went to a credit union to get a loan for a pontoon.

“The pastor convinced the victim’s wife before she died to sign over the modular home in the name of the church and it’s Beth-el general Baptist Church. And she did that because she was so taken in by the pastor. He was doing God’s work,” Pickell said.

The loan officer denied the loan request, and while researching, found Vliet also had power of attorney for other members of the church, Pickell said. That’s when she called the Elder Abuse Task Force.

Pickell said when the credit union turned down the loan, the pastor went to another place and did secure a loan. He also got a loan for another vehicle when he learned the 91-year-old man’s vehicle couldn’t pull the pontoon.

When a welfare check was done at the victim’s house, Pickell said officials noticed some things that just weren’t right.

Sheriff Pickell said, “That’s a pastor that should go to hell.” And all God’s people and atheists too said AMEN!

14 Comments

  1. Avatar
    Hugh D. Young

    Ahhhhh, Thee Good Pastor Vile, welcome to HELL! Supper is served promptly @ 666 o’ clock, and do try the Stooo, I labored over it myself!!! :v

  2. Avatar
    maryg

    again, no big surprise. I have known many pastors over the years who have cozied up to elderly church members and received homes,cars,money etc when the person died. left the family high and dry and pastor threatened to ruin family’s rep so family backs down and preacher is enriched. so typical. if we could have sued for amount of dollars inlaws wasted on their pastor/church, my mil could be living so much better. keep putting this out there and hopefully people will realize that these pastors are just people who grift.

  3. Avatar
    Dolly Hunt

    Been putting it out there. We are the daughters. We think He has been allowed to take everything our father has! Very very disappointed with the fact he is not in jail and for a long long time along with his so called fiancé who also has our dads belongings. Just s thought but, i did not know you could be married and have a fiancé???

  4. Avatar
    Truth in reporting

    Do you believe in truth in reporting? I would think putting your name on this article you would have some integrity. did you investigate any of this information you posted or are you just here to Bash any Pastor to push your atheism? This man is innocent he has taken the evidence to the FBI to prove that he’s innocent. And I don’t know any guilty person that would do that. but let me just tell you Bruce when the old woman passed her children tried to come in and steal everything from the old man and put him in a home and they tried to do that before his kids could find out she passed so they could take what little bit they had they actually tried prior to her passing. And when the pastor wouldn’t allow them to do that then they took advantage of the fact they had a deputy in the family working for the Sheriff’s Department and they conjured up all kinds of things and decided if they couldn’t steal it from the old man that they would contact a daughter and start all this BS. Now the daughter by her own admission in the police report admit she hadn’t had a relationship with her father in over 20 years fact is she wouldn’t even take his call the old woman and the old man told several people this. Don’t you find it strange the police or no one who had contact with a couple or was in or out of their home didn’t talk to any of them didn’t interview anyone in the church they claimed the pastor had Powers of Attorney over everyone in the church yeah I’m part of the church and I can tell you not one member does the pastor hold a power of attorney over or even another human being. In addition everything else that was put in news media what’s a complete lie fabricated by the Sheriff’s Department. If you want the truth and you want to prove email me we will send you all you need to know the print the truth. Unless of course you’re not interested in the truth the Constitution gives you the right of free speech Integrity gives you the right of Truth in free speech.

    • Avatar
      Bruce Gerencser

      This series relies on publicly reported stories. On November 25, 2019, Raymond Vliet pleaded no contest and was ordered to pay restitution. I will update the story to reflect this. If you have any further public news stories about this case that show what I have reported is incorrect, please provide them. I always want these stories to be accurate. You saying something did or didn’t happen is not the same as a verifiable news report. I’ve written 800 of these stories. Occasionally, people contact me, as you have, outraged that I’ve printed a “false” story. Yet, when asked to provide public news stories that support their claims, they are unable to do so.

      For future reference, passively aggressively besmirching my character is so “Christian” on your part. You want my help, yet you insult me.

      If you have actual evidence to send me, please use the contact form at the top of the page.

      Bruce Gerencser

      • Avatar
        Sage

        Hmmm. Plead no contest..I didn’t realize that this is the same as not guilty. OH wait, that’s right, it’s not! People do this when they know the evidence proves their guilt but don’t want to plead guilty for carouse reasons, one example being avoiding a guilty verdict if they are being sued.

  5. Avatar
    Wheres waldo?

    Comment deleted due to commenter not abiding by commenting guidelines — using a fake or different name/email address. Evidently, this commenter is clueless about IP address tracking.

  6. Avatar
    Nuetral joe

    Comment deleted due to commenter not abiding by commenting guidelines — using a fake or different name/email address. Evidently, this commenter is clueless about IP address tracking.

  7. Avatar
    Nuetral joe

    Comment deleted due to commenter not abiding by commenting guidelines — using a fake or different name/email address. Evidently, this commenter is clueless about IP address tracking.

  8. Avatar
    Nuetral joe

    Comment deleted due to commenter not abiding by commenting guidelines — using a fake or different name/email address. Evidently, this commenter is clueless about IP address tracking.

  9. Avatar
    Truth in reporting

    I would be interested to know did these people whose comments were deleted, offer some kind of good things to say about a pastor somewhere? Bruce will you kindly send me a private email where I can send you some real proof I’m talking about legitimate court documents and testimony secondly would you then print anything stating the facts that you saw? You see Bruce I have respect for what you’re doing I believe you’re right crimes against children and even the elderly should be exposed. But I also believe in the Constitution of the United States and I believe you would stand up and fight for your right under the Constitution under the first and second amendment. but I also believe the entire Constitution should be sacred and that a man should be innocent until proven guilty and again I believe in integrity. the internet can be a great thing but it can also destroy a man’s life do you know how easy it would be Bruce to destroy your reputation as a person and accuse you of numerous things and get it in the news and then say okay I’m going to reprint this until an article comes out publicly this says you’re innocent. So your reputation can be destroyed for three years while you go to trial it cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars just to find out someone had a grudge against you, tell me would that be fair? Bruce when you were a pastor living in poverty giving all you had to others were you stealing from the elderly are you a bad pastor? just curious because you seem to try to now make all pastor’s bad people and criminals.

    • Avatar
      Bruce Gerencser

      I would be interested to know did these people whose comments were deleted, offer some kind of good things to say about a pastor somewhere?

      You are a deceitful, dishonest person. It’s your comments I have deleted, not those that belong to anyone else. After I banned you, you tried to use a different name/email address to comment, a direct violation of the commenting rules for this site. You are permanently banned.

      Bruce will you kindly send me a private email where I can send you some real proof I’m talking about legitimate court documents and testimony secondly would you then print anything stating the facts that you saw?

      You have had my email address from the get-go, so quit lying about it. I emailed you the first time you commented. Also, if you subscribe to comments on this post, you have my email address and postal address. So, all you are trying to do is pass yourself off as an aggrieved party. You are not.

      You are free to post your “evidence” to this post in the comment section provided you use your actual name. I think you are the pastor or a relative (or his lover). Readers should be able to know who you are. That you haven’t done any of this says everything about you; your character; your motivations; your lack of respect for me and the readers of this site.

      Diarrhea-filled bullshit deleted….

      Bruce when you were a pastor living in poverty giving all you had to others were you stealing from the elderly are you a bad pastor? just curious because you seem to try to now make all pastor’s bad people and criminals.

      And you once again show that you are an asshole by trying to insult me and attack my character (which you’ve done repeatedly).

      Now you know all you need to know.

      • Avatar
        Astreja

        Rather nice of “Truth” to conveniently leave you an e-mail address, Bruce!. In the event that he or she tries to orchestrate a smear campaign, it should take a forensic IT expert less than an hour to track down the culprit.

        It utterly baffles me as to why this individual is hinting at having evidence, and not only not producing it, but not forwarding it to authorities who could actually take action on it. I’m inclined to think that there never was any evidence, and that this is just an amateur-hour attempt to bury the story.

        (And I do suspect you’re right about “Truth” being closely related to the pastor, if not the pastor himself.)

Want to Respond to Bruce? Fire Away!

Bruce Gerencser