Churches defraud billions from worshipers
The South Pacific nation of Samoa is the latest to draw some attention to the now-defunct Onecoin after two churches in the nation are said to have collaborated with the scam project to defraud billions from worshipers.
This is after the founders went to the small nation and lured preachers of churches to buy into their project, something which then led to the preachers taking up some “get rich quick” campaigns which saw poor congregation members lose billions.
Given the setting of such churches, members turn to trust their leaders and almost yield to all endorsements and instructions given by the church leaders. The founders of the scam project knowing about such exploitation possibilities were fast to capitalized on it.
“In these communities, there is an enhanced sense of family and community bonds and with that comes a very strong sense of trust…
and of course, trust can be exploited by these scams.” Campbell Pentney, a New Zealand based lawyer told Samoa News.
The two churches targeted by these cons are Samoa Worship Centre Christian Church and Auckland branch of the Samoan Independent Seventh Day Adventist Church (SISDAC).
The SISDAC is however, not associated with the international branch of the Seventh Day Adventist Church.
Samoa had banned Onecoin from operating in the country last year and the Samoan government is considering the leaders of these churches as accomplices of the scam. The coin teamed up with these local pastors who then served as their marketers and ambassadors.
While the churches and their leaders have denied any wrongdoing, they are being accused of also helping Onecoin filter over $2 million with church bank accounts. In addition to defrauding billions from worshipers, the churches are now accused of money laundering.
Churches in Samoa are not the first to have been targeted by the founders of Onecoin. In October of last year, a Ugandan church was also a victim of this scam project. The coin has also been banned in over two dozen countries around the world and has billions in lawsuits against it.
Read more about past OneCoin scams;
- OneCoin: Why it caught the attention of regulators around the world.
- OneCoin founders charged by US attorney for multi-billion dollar scam.