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Former Minister Indicted For Allegedly Stealing $800,000 From Houston’s First Baptist Church

The church says Jerrell Altic resigned when representatives from the church confronted him in November 2017.

Houston’s First Baptist Church.

A grand jury has indicted Jerrell Altic, a former minister with Houston's First Baptist Church, for allegedly stealing more than $800,000 from the church, the Harris County District Attorney's Office announced Tuesday.

According to the DA’s office, Altic, 40, allegedly embezzled the money during a period of six years that ended in November 2017. The prosecutors say Altic inappropriately used church funds through a credit card that had been issued by Houston Baptist Church and through other means as well.

The case is assigned to the 176th District Court, which is temporarily housed on 9th floor of civil courthouse.

The case is being handled by Assistant District Attorney Lester Blizzard, chief of the Money Laundering Division at the Harris County District Attorney's Office.

Jerrell Altic.

The Houston Chronicle reported that Altic surrendered himself to authorities Tuesday morning. Bond was set at $50,000.

James Alston, Altic's attorney, said his client has admitted to the crime. Alston declined to comment how any money was embezzled or whether it was spent.

First Baptist Church said in a statement the church discovered “a limited set of suspicious financial activity related to Jerrell Altic” in November 2017. The statement added Altic resigned when representatives from the church confronted him.

Subsequently, the church reported initial findings to law enforcement and to their insurance provider. According to the statement, Altic's fraudulent activities happened between 2011 and 2017, and involved missions funds.

The statement also detailed that the church's insurance coverage paid $500,000 and the leadership “approved using unallocated contingency funds to replace the balance.”

The church also said that despite Altic's actions “all of Houston's First ministry partners received their designated monies, as his actions did not prevent our church from providing resources to local ministries, church plants or other strategic partners.”

The church says it has enacted “enacted additional policies to help ensure all donations and expenses are protected and handled properly moving forward.”

You can read the indictment here:

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