February 28, 1999 |
The president of one of the nation's largest African American denominations was found guilty Saturday of racketeering, convicted of bilking more than $4 million from companies seeking to sell products to the group's members. The Rev. Henry Lyons, 57, of the National Baptist Convention USA was also found guilty of two counts of grand theft in connection with $244,000 given to him from the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith to rebuild burned-out black churches throughout the South.
January 27, 1999 |
When the Rev. Henry J. Lyons accepted a $225,000 check to rebuild burned black churches, he sunk $60,000 in his savings account and spent part of the money to redecorate his house and pay off bills, prosecutors said Tuesday. Lyons had told the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith the money would go immediately to "the wheels that are squeaking the loudest." But prosecutors said he gave $12,000 to his wife and sent money to love interests in Tennessee and Indiana.
March 17, 1998 |
The Rev. Henry Lyons, the president of the National Baptist Convention USA, pleaded not guilty to racketeering and grand theft during a hearing in St. Petersburg. A trial was set for January 1999. Lyons, 55, was arrested in February and charged with two counts of grand theft and one count of racketeering.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 30, 1997 |
The Alabama State Missionary Baptist Convention, the largest black Baptist organization in the state and an affiliate of the beleaguered National Baptist Convention, USA, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in U.S. Bankruptcy Court. The convention's membership includes about 900 churches with a total of 420,000 members, said the Rev. W.E. Pitts, a Tuscaloosa minister who is the convention's executive secretary-treasurer.
February 20, 1992
The head of the nation's largest black church organization denied reports that the National Baptist Convention U.S.A. tried to coerce a teen-age beauty pageant contestant into withdrawing her rape complaint against boxer Mike Tyson. The Rev. T.J. Jemison, president of the group, acknowledged he telephoned the woman but denied that he tried to pressure her into changing her story or offered her money.
September 8, 1990 |
The National Baptist Convention U.S.A. Inc., the nation's third-largest Protestant denomination, Friday urged the United States to negotiate a settlement with Iraq in the Persian Gulf crisis, "no matter how horrific the position of Saddam Hussein might appear." About 1,500 delegates to the black denomination's annual meeting in Los Angeles approved without debate a resolution that reflected the stance of National Baptist President T. J. Jemison.