FEDS PROBE ‘ANGEL’ DELLA’S CHURCH

Published on: July 20, 2011
FEDS PROBE ‘ANGEL’ DELLA’S CHURCH
Allegations of missing church funds spark IRS investigation of "Touched by an Angel" star DELLA REESE!
 
DELLA is caught up in an Internal Rev­enue Service probe after an ENQUIRER investi­gation revealed that she covered up for employees who swindled $1.5 million from her church.
 
And while Della told The ENQUIRER that she informed her congregation about the missing funds and chose not to prosecute, sources say the feder­al government has nevertheless launched a probe into the ac­tions of the beloved 80-year-old actress.
 
“The IRSis looking into the church’s finances,” Billie Hall, Della’s former executive assis­tant, told The ENQUIRER.
 
“An IRS agent recently con­tacted me and asked questions about what I saw and heard Del­la and Franklin do in regard to money they raised for the church and how it was disbursed.”
 
Another former church em­ployee confirmed the IRS probe.
 
“An IRS agent asked me ques­tions about how Della and Franklin handled church funds and the intermingling of church accounts and their personal ac­counts,” the ex-employee told The ENQUIRER.
 
“I was asked who handled the money and checks and who had access to the church account. The agent said they were ‘gath­ering information,’ and I may get more calls as they move for­ward.”
 
IRS public information officer Felicia McCain would neither confirm nor deny an investi­gation into Della’s church, but she requested a copy of Della’s ENQUIRER interview.
 
Della, an ordained minister, and her husband Franklin Lett founded Understanding Prin­ciples for Better Living Church. In an exclusive ENQUIRER in­terview, she said the two of them had traced the missing money to former employees, who had been cash­ing church checks and using church credit cards.
 
D e l l a claimed that she opted not to prosecute after notify­ing the congregation about the theft.
 
But Hall disputes THAT.
 
“I worked for Della and Frank­lin for nine years, and they never told the entire congregation that money was missing from any church fund,” Hall said.
 
“Many former employees know the truth about the ques­tionable way they handled church finances.”