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2 church leaders admit to operating tax fraud scheme

NEWARK, N.J. — Two high-ranking members of a New York-based church have admitted their roles in a scheme to siphon millions of dollars from members for personal use and not pay taxes on the money.

Jermaine Grant and Lincoln Warrington of New Jersey each pleaded guilty Wednesday to conspiracy to defraud the U.S. The U.S. attorney’s office lists Grant as living in Burlington City and Warrington in Bergen County.

An indictment alleges that the men used their positions in the Israelite Church of God in Jesus Christ to take nearly $3 million for personal expenses, including private school tuition for Grant’s children.

Grant was the church’s leader and Warrington its primary treasurer.

They allegedly funneled the money to an entertainment company created to give the impression that Grant was a successful entertainment mogul.

The Associated Press