A federal jury has awarded a Jonesboro, Ark., church $43.6 million in its lawsuit against an insurance group that wasn’t licensed or authorized to sell insurance.
Old St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church in West Memphis sued First Nation Insurance Group and four others when it tried to enforce performance and payment bonds the insurance company had issued on construction of a new worship center.
Larry Jackson, who represented the church, said the court found First Nation liable to the church for fraud, bad faith, breach of the bonds and violation of the Arkansas Insurance Codes.
The church paid more than $121,000 for the bonds in March 2006 through Gwen Moyo.
Moyo was convicted in Louisiana in 2008 of selling millions of dollars in bogus construction bonds and conspiring with former state Sen. Derrick Shepherd to launder proceeds of her illegal insurance business. Moyo was sentenced to a 20-year prison term.
Shepherd pled guilty to the charges.
Jackson says in December 2006, the contractor walked off the job, and the church attempted to invoke the performance and payment bonds to finish the project.
The church ended up making the repairs and finishing the construction.
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