Bishop Eddie Long is being sued by former New Birth Missionary Baptist Church members who claim the embattled megachurch pastor encouraged them to invest money with a company despite being informed the investor had a $3 million capital deficit.
According to the AJC, the suit was filed late last month in DeKalb County state court. The suite alleges that Long’s assistant had been warned by an unidentified caller that Ephren W. Taylor was untrustworthy two weeks before Taylor held a series of financial seminars in October 2009 at New Birth in Lithonia.
The suit was filed by 12 former church members who say they lost more than $1 million in the alleged ponzi scheme. New Birth, Long and Taylor are all named in the suit.
Church spokesman Art Franklin said in a statement that Long “remain(s) hopeful that Ephren Taylor and companies related to him restore the funds that were taken from congregants at New Birth and churches around the county. We continue to cooperate as the case proceeds.”
The Securities and Exchange Commission has a civil case pending against Taylor, who’s alleged to have targeted more than 1,000 investors, mostly church members.
The suit is the latest legal trouble for Eddie Long. In May 2011, despite vowing to fight the charges, Long reached a settlement with four young men who claimed Long sexually abused them.