‘God help anyone who would …get in the way of TBN’
Writer: Teri Sforza | 14 February 2012 | taxdollars.ocregister.com
We told you last week that the granddaughter of Trinity Broadcasting Network's Paul and Jan Crouch has accused the world's largest Christian broadcaster of unlawfully distributing charitable assets worth more than $50 million to the company’s directors.
The charges were leveled in a federal lawsuit filed by Crouch granddaughter Brittany Koper (far left) against her former lawyers, who also do legal work for Trinity. One of those lawyers said her charges were "outright fiction and wholly without merit."
On Thursday, Feb. 9 — the same day that our story ran online — Paul Crouch and his son, Matt, were having a live chat on TBN's "Behind the Scenes." Paul was reminiscing about how TBN began back in 1973 — God spoke to him as he was driving on MacArthur Boulevard — and the conversation took a turn that Koper's attorney finds somewhat menacing.
"You know what's funny Dad?" Matt said (at minute 8:38 on the video). "There have been a few attempts in the TBN history to upset TBN, to stop TBN, to — there have been a few fools in the 38, 39 year history, coming up on 40 years, and you know what, any attempt at stopping TBN — they have no idea who they’re actually pushing into the corner. You and Mom get pushed in a corner, God help you. That's a lesson I've learned from you, seriously."
Paul Crouch responded: "God help anyone who would try to get in the way of TBN, which was God’s plan. … I have attended the funerals of at least two people who tried….
"Boy, anyone that's ever tried to get in the way of this network – don’t. Don't try it. Don't try it, I'm telling you. You’re playing with fire. God says 'I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.' And TBN, you know what, just plain old TBN as a great network entity is proof of the sovereignty of God and the power of God against hell and high water. This network stands as a monument to the faithfulness of God. He did it. Jan and I were just simple little kids — we didn't even know what we were doing. It was God's idea. He did it all."
Crouch then appealed for donations. "Anyone have a need?" he asked. "Plant a seed. Get to the phone."
The comments were directed at no one in particular, but they resounded with Koper.
Trinity Christian Center, which does business as TBN, is a nonprofit in the eyes of Uncle Sam, which means it doesn't pay taxes on its income. It reported revenues of $175.6 million, expenses of $193.7 million, and net assets of $827.6 million at the end of 2010, according to its tax returns. Its highest-paid officer was Paul Crouch, with compensation of $400,000.
Koper's attorney, Tymothy MacLeod, said that Koper is readying documentation regarding her charges and will submit a package to the Internal Revenue Service for its review.
In her suit, Koper says that she had been threatened by Trinity officials.
"After and as a result of reporting and objecting to her employers' unlawful conduct, Ms. Koper was terminated by the TBN Companies," the suit says. "In retaliation, the TBN Companies also terminated Ms. Koper's husband, Michael Koper, who was Trinity Broadcasting’s Corporate Secretary and Vice President of Media Services.
"When questioned about the grounds for termination, Matthew Crouch, a director at Trinity Broadcasting, began tapping the firearm he had brought to the meeting and asked Ms. Koper what she thought would happen when she wrote a memo to the board critical of Matthew Crouch's financial improprieties. Matthew Crouch continued tapping the gun he was holding to ensure that Ms. Koper recognized the lethal threat being made."
Again, for the record, the attorneys say that Koper's assertions are fiction.
- God Kills Anybody Against TBN [video]
- TBN Co-Founder Paul Crouch Suggests God Will Kill People for TBN
- TBN's Matthew Crouch Allegedly Threatens to Kill the Granddaughter of Paul and Jan Crouch
- TBN's Paul and Matt Crouch: God Kills Those Who Come Against Them