The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, otherwise known as the Mormon Church, has been accused of stockpiling billions of dollars worth of donations. As the Washington Post reports, a former investment manager filed a complaint to the Internal Revenue Service for over $100 billion that the church said was to be used for charitable purposes.
In a confidential document the IRS received on Nov. 21, the whistleblower said the leaders of the chucrh has misled its members. In the process of doing so, the church also allegedly breached federal tax rules. Instead of using the surplus donations for charity, it has been alleged that the leaders used the tax-exempt donations for a number of unnamed businesses. In a statement, the Mormon Church said it does not comment on any of its financial transactions.
"Claims being currently circulated are based on a narrow perspective and limited information," the church's First Presidency said. "The Church complies with all applicable law governing our donations, investments, taxes, and reserves." David A. Nielsen, who filed the complaint with the IRS, is a 41-year-old Mormon who worked as a senior portfolio manager at the church until this September.
The Mormon Church's investment division is a company named Ensign Peak Advisors, and if the allegations are true, then it's expected Ensign could owe billions in taxes. Nielsen is looking for a reward from the IRS, and hopes to see Ensign stripped of its tax-exempt status. "Having seen tens of billions in contributions and scores more in investment returns come in, and having seen nothing except two unlawful distributions to for-profit concerns go out, he was dejected beyond words, and so was I," said Nielsen's twin brother, Lars P. Nielsen.