Plumber finds envelopes of cash in toilet wall at Joel Osteen's megachurch

‘I moved some insulation away and about 500 envelopes fell out of the wall’

Gustaf Kilander
Washington, DC
Friday 03 December 2021 17:49 GMT
Related video: California megachurch draws thousands at in-person services defying state coronavirus orders
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A plumber has revealed that he found checks and envelopes of cash in the wall of a toilet while he worked at Joel Osteen’s megachurch in Houston, Texas.

Lakewood Church was burglarized in 2014 and $600,000 was stolen. Police are still investigating the case seven years later.

The plumber called into the morning radio show at 100.3 The Bull, telling them about the work he did at the church on 10 November.

“There was a loose toilet in the wall, and we removed the tile,” the caller told the programme. “We went to go remove the toilet, and I moved some insulation away and about 500 envelopes fell out of the wall, and I was like ‘Oh wow!’”

The caller added that around 3,000 envelopes stuffed with checks and cash were eventually found.

“I went ahead and contacted the maintenance supervisor that was there, and I turned it all in,” he said.

Morning show host George Lindsey said on Thursday that “he relayed to us that in 2014 there was a big story about money being stolen from Lakewood church that they never recovered”.

The Houston Police Department is still investigating the 2014 burglary and it’s not clear how much money the plumber found in the toilet wall.

“Don’t you want to know what happened, I mean they stole the money, but they didn’t get it out of the wall. Did they have an accident, you know what I mean? It’s like, why did they never go back? If it’s that money, why did they never go back?” Mr Lindsey said.

A Lakewood Church representative confirmed that the envelopes had been found during the restroom repairs, according to KRPC.

Crime Stoppers of Houston offered a reward of $25,000 at the time of the burglary for tips that would lead to arrests.

“He’s the one who found it,” Mr Lindsey said of the plumber. “If he never had been doing that work behind that toilet, they would have never known that money was there.”

Crime Stoppers of Houston told KPRC that a tipster would have to contact the organisation with information prompting the arrest of a suspect to receive the funds, but that the statute of limitation, in this case, has expired and no money will be given out.

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