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Press Release

Thomas L. Kimmel Convicted Of Conspiracy, Mail Fraud, And Money Laundering

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of North Carolina

RALEIGH – United States Attorney Thomas G. Walker announced that today in federal court, before Chief United States District Judge James C. Dever III, a jury convicted, Thomas L. Kimmel, 68, of Conspiracy, Mail Fraud, and Money Laundering.

KIMMEL was named in an Indictment filed on August 21, 2013. Assistant United States Attorneys David A. Bragdon and Evan Rikhye represented the government.  Mr. Bragdon stated: “Kimmel used his professed spirituality and position of trust as a tool to defraud victims at their churches-the very places they felt the most safe.” 

At trial, the Government presented evidence that KIMMEL solicited about $20 million for Sure Line Acceptance Corporation from investors.  Most of these investors found out about Sure Line through financial conferences that KIMMEL gave at churchesrelating to Biblical principles of finance and getting out of debt.  Most of the victims never received any of their principal back.  KIMMEL would typically spend a few minutes of each conference telling investors about a 12% collateralized note program.  Many of these presentations were recorded, and the Government presented evidence that Kimmel’s statements about Sure Line were false and that the collateralized note program was a Ponzi scheme.  The jury heard testimony from three conspirators who had previously pled guilty to Conspiracy and Sale of Unregistered Securities; James Willis Kirk, Jr., Glen E. Smith, Jr., and Carol April Graff.  The jury also heard testimony from about fifteen victims.

Investigation of this case was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Internal Revenue Service, and the Postal Inspection Service. Assistant United States Attorneys David A. Bragdon and Evan Rikhye prosecuted the case.

Updated July 14, 2015