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TV Evangelist Fraud Gets 14 Years in Prison

A former doctor turned TV evangelist and fake health fraud has been convicted and sentenced to 14 years in prison for a fake cancer cure that she promoted on the Trinity Broadcasting Network, the world’s largest Christian television network. Courthouse News reports:

Christine Daniel, 58, of Santa Clarita, was convicted of four counts of fraud, six counts of tax evasion and one count of witness tampering, in a September 2011 jury trial.

She was sent to prison and ordered to forfeit $1.3 million at her Friday sentencing.

Daniel ran a clinic in the Mission Hills area of Los Angeles, “under names such as the Sonrise Wellness Center,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a statement announcing her sentence.

Prosecutors said in the statement: “The basic facts of the case are that Daniel, a medical doctor and prominent Pentecostal minister, fraudulently marketed and collected more than $1 million for a medical treatment that she and her employees claimed could cure many diseases and conditions, including cancer, multiple sclerosis, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, diabetes and hepatitis. Daniel claimed that her bogus cancer cure had a success rate of between 60 percent and 80 percent for the most advanced forms of cancer.

“The evidence presented at trial showed that Daniel’s treatment did not cure anyone of cancer, nor was it was made from herbs from around the world or blended for an individual patient, as she has promised patients. Chemical analyses determined that the product contained sunscreen preservative and beef extract flavoring, among other ingredients, none of which could have had any effect on cancer or other diseases.”

The statement added: “Daniel used her status as a Pentecostal minister to create a bond of trust with members of the Evangelical Christian community, an affinity that gave her access to victims to whom she sold bogus hope and worthless treatments. Daniel promoted the product under a variety of names – including ‘C-Extract,’ ‘the natural treatment’ and ‘the herbal treatment’ – through a program televised on the Trinity Broadcasting Network.”

Which makes it only slightly more fraudulent than everything else that airs on TBN.

Comments

  1. says

    If she had called it “faith healing” and accepted “donations” for “pills blessed with the power of faith”, there is nothing the law could have done.

  2. janiceclanfield says

    But if it wasn’t true they couldn’t say that on TV!

    Could they?

    Janice, friend from the Great White North

  3. says

    Is there any chance that KKKommitted KKKristian KKKlown (and charlatan) of her sort might have a cellblock conversion to atheism?

  4. unbound says

    My 1st thought reading the headline was “I didn’t know that Pat Robertson was even being looked at that closely.”

    My 2nd thought reading the headline was “Why a TV Evangelist? Lots more fraud going on in most corporations…”

  5. says

    Which makes it only slightly more fraudulent than everything else that airs on TBN.

    Wait. Selling a cure for cancer is more fraudulent than selling eternal life? Charging a hundred bucks for beef flavored Coppertone (thanks Who Knows?) is worse than extracting 10% of your lifetime earnings?

  6. kevinalexander says

    Beef flavored Coppertone.. why the hell didn’t I think of that?

    Have you ever tasted Coppertone? It needs the beef to help it go down.

  7. grumpyoldfart says

    A former doctor turned TV evangelist and fake health fraud has been convicted and sentenced to 14 years in prison for a fake cancer cure

    I bet she’ll be out in less than three years, and I’ll bet the accountants can’t find even ten dollars of the $1.3 million she has been ordered to forfeit.

  8. raven says

    This isn’t even the first or worst scandal on Trinity Broadcasting.

    The Crouches, the owners, were accused by one of their relatives who is also their accountant, of diverting tens of millions of dollars to their own use.

    There have also been sexual scandals.

  9. Michael Heath says

    Ed writes:

    Which makes it only slightly more fraudulent than everything else that airs on TBN.

    Oh I think the primary set of assertions regarding Christianity are far more fraudulent than what we observe here, and far more damaging to humanity than what this two-bit huckster did. We just don’t criminalize that form of fraud; in spite of the abuse humans have suffered through.

  10. dan4 says

    @13: “This isn’t even the first of worst scandal Trinity Broadcasting.”

    The Crouches, the owners, were accused…”

    So accusations of criminality (the Crouches) are the same thing as PROVEN acts of criminality (Christine Daniel)? Well, if you’re an authoritarian jackass, they are.

  11. dingojack says

    Here ya go Dan – FoAW

    “In February 2012, Brittany B. Koper, TBN’s former Director of Finance (and the granddaughter of Paul Sr. and Jan Crouch), filed a lawsuit against her former attorneys, Davert & Loe. The 3 counts of the complaint were: Breach of Fiduciary Duties; Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress; and Professional Negligence. Koper filed the suit following the termination of her employment with TBN. Davert & Loe, who also represented TBN, denied her claims. Koper’s suit against Davert & Loe is pending. No official judicial ruling has been made in this matter.[56][57]
    In a May 2012 interview with The New York Times, Koper claimed that, “My job as finance director was to find ways to label extravagant personal spending as ministry expenses”. Koper alleged that the network had herself and chauffeurs and sound engineers—ordained as ministers in order to avoid paying Social Security taxes on their salaries.
    Paul Crouch, Jr. resigned his position at TBN. As of November 10, 2011, Paul Crouch, Jr. has joined The Word Network as Director of Project Development.[58]”

    That wasn’t too difficult was it?

    Dingo
    ——–
    [56] http://www.charismanews.com/us/33409-exclusive-lawsuit-against-tbn-dismissed
    [57]. Family Battle Offers Look Inside Lavish TV Ministry, The New York Times, 4 May 2012
    [58]. http://www.cbn.com/cbnnews/us/2011/November/Paul-Crouch-JrJoins-The-Word-Network

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