Sat. Jun 15th, 2024

Dallas pastor sentenced to 35 years for false property documents

By meerna Jun12,2024

A local pastor was sentenced to 35 years in prison after being found guilty of using fraudulent methods to steal church property in Dallas and Lancaster.

The Dallas County District Attorney’s Office announced Monday that 56-year-old Whitney Foster was convicted after presenting evidence to a jury that he illegally foreclosed on 10 different properties, including those belonging to three churches. Foster had previous convictions for identity theft and arson.

The three church properties at issue in the case – First Christian Church of Lancaster and in Dallas, Canada, Drive Christian Church and Church at Niniveh – are valued at more than $800,000, which led to Foster’s first-degree felony conviction for theft of property worth $300 or more 000 dollars.

His plan included submitting forged property deeds, naming a non-existent person as the donor, and naming himself or his church, True Nondenominational Church, as the beneficiary.

While Foster remains in the Dallas County Jail, his congregation occupies one of the properties that the district attorney’s office describes as “embroiled in legal complications caused by Foster’s actions.”

“Property is the foundation of our society – it provides security, a home, a place to love and welcome each other. It also represents a very active part of our economy, both in terms of buying, selling and renting real estate, as well as property taxes that support everything our government does for the citizens of Dallas County,” said Phillip Clark, lead prosecutor in the Foster case.

“Deed fraud cases are not ordinary disputes; it’s lies and deceit – it’s theft – and it does deep damage. “I am grateful that the jury saw the truth in this case and held the defendant accountable,” Clark added.

To avoid becoming a victim of fraud, the District Attorney’s Office recommends that homeowners register their properties using the free housing fraud alert service offered by Dallas County and other areas. This additional layer of protection allows you to quickly take action in response to false reports.

“If you own a home or property, pay attention. Take care of it,” Clark told Fox 4 KDFW. “Monitor if something problematic arises. Act on it.”

In Dallas, white-collar crimes such as fraud or embezzlement have been reported 1,000 times this year as of June 10, according to the city’s crime dashboard. Most of these incidents are referred to as “confidence schemes.”

Considering that there are an average of six to seven white-collar crime reports each day in Dallas, this places a significant strain on law enforcement resources.

The Dallas Police Department faces significant staffing shortages, which reduces its effectiveness in reducing response times and combating nonviolent crime. DPD employs about 3,000 officers, roughly 1,000 fewer than the 4,000 officers recommended in the city’s analysis of public safety needs by population size.

Additionally, city officials approved a DPD budget for this fiscal year of just $654 million, putting Dallas in the lowest category of police spending compared to other high-crime municipalities across the country.

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By meerna

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