Feds: Filipino mega-church founder profited from human trafficking tactics
HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The federal investigation into the Kingdom of Jesus Christ Church alleges that the church’s massive human trafficking scheme enriched, and even provided sex for the church’s flamboyant founder.
Federal court documents describes young men and women working long hours, soliciting donations on the street to pay for designer suits and luxury cars like a Bentley and a bullet-proof Cadillac Escalade.
“I think what’s especially kind of evil to me in this kind of case is he’s doing it under the guise of a religious organization, which seems to be run more like a business," said immigration attorney Clare Hanusz, who has represented a number of human trafficking victims in other cases.
“The church used pretty much every trick in the human trafficking playbook from sham marriages to other forms of visa fraud ... and then the sex trafficking part as well.”
A former church member in Hawaii told the feds that she was one of a number of minors forced to serve in a “child sex ring” for Quiboloy.
The complaint said that at least one other woman has come forward with similar allegations -- allegations Quiboloy has denied.
It’s still unclear if federal authorities will charge Quiboloy who wasn’t even referred to by name in the complaint.
The FBI yesterday arrested three church officials in Los Angeles and raided it’s Van Nuys, Calif. church and its church in Waipahu as part of its investigation.
The federal complaint alleged that members brought from Philippines were forced to solicit donations on the street, often sleeping in cars at truck stops. Many forced to sell pastries like Krispy Kreme donuts, claiming they were for the church’s foundation for children, the complaint said.
Sources said members who didn’t meet a $500 per day fundraising quota were often beaten.
Attorney Michael Green, who represents several church officials, said the investigation is based on testimony from disgruntled former church members.
“They spend millions educating orphans and people that are members of the church. And they’ve been doing so for food and shelter and education. Kids can go to school," Green said.
Green points out that in exchange for their testimony the witnesses are being allowed to stay in the U.S.
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