Eddie Long Scandal: Minister Seeks to Recoup Settlement Money
Three of the young men who accused New Missionary Baptist Church minister Eddie Long of sexual coercion may have to pay back nearly $1 million of their settlement money, it has been reported Friday.
Long and his attorneys have notified the young men, Jamal Parris, Spencer LeGrande and Centino Kemp, alleging that they have violated terms of the confidentiality agreement included in the financial settlement, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Friday.
In letters sent to Parris, LeGrande, and Kemp, Long and his attorneys informed the trio that New Birth pastor intends to seek to recoup money from the settlement, the full amount of which has not been made public.
The legal team representing Long is seeking at least $900,000 already paid to the three accusers, according to people involved in the settlement but not authorized to speak publicly, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. That figure is a portion of the total settlement with the three men.
Calculating that the $900,000 figure is simply a portion paid to Parris, LeGrande and Kemp, the Atlanta publication estimates that the settlement cost Long at least $1.5 million.
Long was accused in a lawsuit filed last September of using church funds on gifts and trips for the men while having sexual relations with them. The men, who all attended New Birth Missionary Baptist church, were in their late teens at the time.
Kemp, 22, revealed Sept. 14 that he had written a book about his affair with the megachurch pastor, titling the work The First Lady.
Kemp described the book as a story of "love, lust, power, extravagant living and travel, betrayal, deceit, rape, down-low homosexual lifestyle, molestation, church corruption, secret societies, suicide attempts and religion."
Parrish and LeGrande, both of whom used to attend New Birth's LongFellows Youth Academy and whom Long had selected to mentor, broke their silence in late August.
The two men revealed that they were also planning to release a tell-all book, which they described as more of therapeutic venture.
"I don't care if this book sells one copy. But if it's just for me, this is what my life looked like, this is my voice for the first time," Parris told WSB-TV.
Long has denied all allegations of sexual abuse and also denied using funds from New Birth Missionary Baptist Church to entice the boys with "cars, clothes, jewelry, and electronics," as the 2010 lawsuit alleged.
The Lithonia, Ga., minister issued a statement in late August saying he wanted to put the sexual allegations behind him and focus on what God wants to do through his church.