Back in 2017, Todd Coontz, a Christian preacher who offered God-inspired financial advice through Rock Wealth International Ministries was charged with tax fraud after a decade of allegedly claiming personal expenses for business use.
This was a guy who wrote off a $1.5 million condo as a business expense… even though it was his family’s property. He also said the several luxury cars he owned were for his business. And so was his boat. And all those clothes. And the jewelry. And the $140,000 he spent on meals and entertainment.
He was eventually charged with “three counts of failure to pay taxes and four counts of aiding and assisting in the filing of false tax returns.”
In 2019, he was found guilty on all seven charges but spent only one day in jail before he was released pending an appeal. And when he lost that appeal, he appealed again, all the way to the Supreme Court.
I missed this when it happened, but I didn’t want to ignore it now: In late February, the Court threw out his challenge. It was over. Coontz was now a guilty man with no more legal outs at his disposal. On March 9, the paperwork was completed and he began what will now be a five-year sentence (with some time already served) at Pensacola Federal Prison Camp (Pensacola FPC), a minimum security prison in Florida.
His released date is set for June 3, 2025.
It’s good to see justice applied to someone who genuinely deserved it — in this case a man who used religion to dupe gullible people into sending him money, only to try and scam the government because his greed got the best of him.
As much as I’d love for other televangelists to learn a lesson from him, so many of the more prominent ones seem incapable of that kind of personal growth.