Posted on June 19, 2024

N.Y. Bishop Sentenced to 9 Years in Prison for Wire Fraud and Attempted Extortion, Feds Say

Antonio Planas, NBC, June 17, 2024

A bishop in Brooklyn, New York, who authorities say stole from one of his parishioners was sentenced to nine years in prison Monday in a series of financial fraud crimes that netted him millions, federal prosecutors said.

Bishop Lamor Miller-Whitehead, 46, was convicted in March of wire fraud, attempted wire fraud, attempted extortion and making false statements to federal law enforcement agents, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York said in a statement.

Miller-Whitehead, a bishop at the Leaders of Tomorrow International Ministries church in Canarsie, made headlines in July 2022 when armed assailants robbed him and his wife of $1 million worth of jewelry during a livestreamed service, police said.

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams called him “a con man who stole millions of dollars in a string of financial frauds and even stole from one of his own parishioners.”


Miller-Whitehead embraced his flashy lifestyle. He was known for driving around in a Rolls-Royce, and records show he lived in a $1.6 million home in Paramus, New Jersey. {snip}


Miller-Whitehead persuaded one of his parishioners to invest about $90,000 from her retirement savings with him by promising he would help buy her a home, prosecutors said. He spent the money on luxury goods and personal expenses and did not pay her back when she asked, prosecutors said.

He also extorted a businessman out of $5,000, prosecutors said, and tried to persuade the same man to lend him $500,000 and stakes in real estate transactions in return for favorable actions from the mayor of New York City, prosecutors said.