The end of the world didn't come quick enough for Northern Kentucky doomsday prophet Ronald Weinland. He was found guilty Wednesday of federal tax evasion.
Weinland’s defense attorneys told jurors during the eight-day trial that their client deposited church money in Swiss bank accounts because he believed society was in its "final days," and that before Jesus Christ returns, the U.S. financial system would collapse. Weinland's Web site claims the beginning of the end of earth as the human race knows it started on May 27 – just eight days before the start of the trial.
Associated Press shorter version:
A federal jury in northern Kentucky has convicted a doomsday prophet of income tax evasion.
The Kentucky Enquirer (http://bit.ly/MIoDro) reported jurors in Covington deliberated less than four hours Wednesday before convicting Ronald Weinland of Union on five tax evasion counts.
Defense attorneys argued Weinland placed church money in Swiss bank accounts because he feared collapse of the U.S. monetary system.
Prosecutors said Weinland avoided taxes on money he collected through his ministry, known as the Church of God - Preparing for the Kingdom of God.
Weinland was convicted of writing off more than $357,000 in personal expenses as church-related. He faces up to five years in prison when he is sentenced on Sept. 24. U.S. District Court Judge Danny Reeves placed the 63-year-old Weinland on home detention with electronic monitoring.