Federal agents descended on the North Texas headquarters of television evangelist Benny Hinn and took boxes out of the offices.
The search began about 9 a.m. Wednesday at Hinn’s headquarters in the Dallas-Fort Worth suburb of Grapevine, near Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport. According to Hinn’s website, he was in Paris.
Lisa Slimak, spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney’s office in Dallas, said she was unable to confirm or deny the existence of an investigation. A message sent to Bennie Hinn Ministries went unanswered.
Hinn was one of six television evangelists investigated by the Senate Finance Committee in 2007. Three years later, the six were cleared of any wrongdoing.
U.S. Postal Service inspectors and IRS criminal investigators returned Thursday to search the Grapevine offices of prominent televangelist Benny Hinn.
Though NBC 5 crews saw a large number of federal agents walking in and out of the offices with boxes, investigators would not say what they are looking for or even confirm they are investigating Hinn.
Neighbors saw the agents swarm into the building about 9 a.m. Wednesday.
“It looked like a big raid – people everywhere, police people everywhere out there, and just rushing in,” said John Ebert, who works next door.
The IRS criminal investigators on scene primarily investigate tax evasion and general fraud against the government.
Investigators said most of the employees had gone home and Hinn himself was not present. According to a schedule posted on his website, Hinn is in Paris, France.
SOURCE: Alice Barr
NBC 5 DFW