Jim Stanley, the Missouri pastor who recently pleaded guilty to wire fraud charges after swindling elderly investors with a life insurance scam, has found a friend in the right-wing website WorldNetDaily.
Joseph Farah, the editor of WorldNetDaily, which boasts of having “many of [Stanley’s] teachings DVDs and books for sale in the WND Superstore,” released a statement defending the Missouri pastor, saying “the gifted Bible teacher” shouldn’t have been “punished for something that took place a long time ago, long before he entered the ministry.”
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch notes that some of Stanley’s elderly investors said they “trusted him because of his professed Christian faith and family values,” noting that Stanley “has since appeared on multiple Christian TV networks and radio stations nationwide.”
A Bible teacher and pastor with an international ministry pleaded guilty to 11 counts of financial wire fraud earlier this year and was sentenced Wednesday to seven years in federal prison.
Jim Staley, 40, pastor of Passion for Truth Ministries in St. Charlies, Missouri, taught the Hebraic roots of the Christian faith and has many of his teaching DVDs and books for sale in the WND Superstore.
Joseph Farah, founder and CEO of WND, said the company will continue to sell Staley’s teaching videos and books.
“Jim Staley is one of the most gifted Bible teachers I know,” he said. “It’s unfortunate he is being punished for something that took place a long time ago, long before he entered the ministry – charges for which he was previously investigated and cleared by state authorities. I pray Jim comes through this and will be able to hold his family together in this time of great challenge.”
On Monday, two days before he was sentenced to spend the next seven years in a federal prison, Staley told WND he had resigned himself to whatever God willed for his life.
“I praise God that I know who is really the Judge and in control,” he said. “Our lives are really not our own. We are bought with a price. And if this is His will, then so be it. Many men of God had to go to prison. I pray I am not one of them, but may His will be done. ”