The hotels. His condos. Parris admitted to the Atlanta station that the suggestive pictures of the pastor wearing spandex and workout clothes were sent to him and that the pastor expected him to return the favor. The year-old is one of four men suing the megachurch preacher in state court, claiming that Long abused his "spiritual authority" and gave them cars, clothes, cash and trips to lure them into sexual relationships while they were teen members of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in suburban Atlanta.
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A fifth accuser, Centino Kemp, came forward as the lawsuit entered a mediation process. An undisclosed financial settlement was reached soon after.
They said Jamal Parris, the fourth former New Birth member to sue Long, also consented to the statement. The book will focus on their lives after breaking ties with the controversial bishop, who consistently denied the allegations against him. The sermon, on the importance of fathers, left him in tears. Parris told The AJC in his father was abusive and rarely present.
Both men said they were 17 when the sexual advances began. By then he had taken them on several trips, to Kenya, Honduras and the Bahamas, among other exotic locales, introducing them to world-famous celebrities and lavishing them with new cars and their own apartments. Their relationship with Long affected each man differently, but profoundly.
Long never addressed the scandal directly, but in a sermon earlier this year he, too, had briefly entertained taking his own life. Now it appears his accusers will have the final say on the most trying chapter in the life of New Birth and its bishop. Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today.
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Men who sued Eddie Long for sexual misconduct address bishop’s death
Multiple sources, who wanted to remain anonymous because of possible litigation, confirmed the letter was sent this week. Parris and LeGrande sat down with Channel 2 investigative reporter Jodie Fleischer in August to discuss their accusations against Long. They did not disclose the total settlement amount, but they knew they were putting it in jeopardy. So you don't really care if you lose it," LeGrande told Fleischer. Parris directed his comments directly to Long saying, "If you want it back, if you're that desperate, because your church membership ain't the way it needs to be, guess what, great for you.
Georgia: Another Allegation Against Church Leader
When Parris was 17, he said, Long would take him "alone to the guesthouse" and "encourage him to call him daddy," according to his lawsuit. None of Long's accusers, including Spencer LaGrande, Maurice Robinson and Anthony Flagg, had spoken publicly since their lawsuits were filed last week. The other young men claimed in separate lawsuits that he lavished them with expensive gifts and trips and then forced them into sexual relationships when they were teenagers. Parris alleged that Long also used the "holy scripture to justify and support the sexual activity.