WEST PALM BEACH (CBSMiami/AP) — A West Palm Beach church and its two pastors should be prepared to return $2 million in donations they received from a parishioner who stole the money in a Ponzi scheme, a federal judge ruled.
Federal Judge Robin Rosenberg ruled that the Winners Church and its father and son pastors, Frederick and Whitney Shipman, should be required to return the stolen money they received from member Jose Aman.READ MORE: Cardiac Electrophysiology: Talking About The Heart’s Electric System
He and two others took the money in a $30 million Ponzi scheme.
The Palm Beach Post reports that the Shipmans had argued that state law exempts donations made to religious organizations from seizure.READ MORE: Fort Lauderdale Worker Injured During Active Shooter Training Session
Rosenberg ruled the exemption doesn’t apply because the money is being sought by federal regulators.
The 3,000-member Pentecostal church received $1.2 million while Frederick Shipman got $729,000. His son received $41,000.MORE NEWS: Surging Memphis Grizzlies Beat The Miami Heat 105-90
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)