Danielle Winchester, Malissa Davis, Roland Leak
Fleecing the flock for personal gain: A case of affinity fraud in the Black Church
The Black Church is a trusted source of information in the Black Christian community. Ephren Taylor, frequently referred to as “Minister Taylor,” hitched City Capital Corporation’s Building Wealth Tour to the Black Church’s influence and reputation by using religious rhetoric and his personal history as a son of a preacher in order to bilk over 400 church goers, mainly African American, in 43 states across the United States of more than $11 million. City Capital Corporation and its former corporate officer, Wendy Connor used investors' money to pay off other investors, and cover personal expenses like his company's payroll, rent, and studio time for his wife’s musical career. “He preyed upon investors’ faith and their desire to help others, convincing them that they could earn healthy returns while also helping their communities,” said David Woodcock, director of the SEC’s Fort Worth Regional Office in Texas. Pamela was one of his many victims.