Robert Dell, who ran The Rock Community Church and Transformation Center, ran a criminal enterprise involving the very people he professed to help.
Pastor Commits Crime With Those He Was ‘Helping’
A Florida pastor, Robert Dell, made headlines after he was accused of stealing items from Home Depot and reselling them on platforms like eBay. As per reports by Business Insider, he earned millions through the alleged crime ring, which he ran with the help of his mother, wife, and others.
Mr. Dell allegedly used his roles as a pastor at The Rock Church and director of a halfway house for recovering drug addicts to force people to steal for him by manipulating and threatening them to participate in the scheme.
Prosecutors say Dell asked the people in his recovery program to pilfer items like drills from Home Depot stores throughout the St. Petersburg region and then sell them to him.
The operation resulted in the pastor and four co-conspirators stealing merchandise worth more than $1.4 million from stores in several counties.
“Co-conspirators, Daniel Mace and Jessica Wild, stole the majority of the merchandise and, on average, victimized stores five to six times a day,” according to a statement from Florida’s Attorney General office.
The crime ring team shoplifted Milwaukee, DeWalt, and other branded products from Home Depot stores throughout Citrus, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk, and Sarasota Counties and sold the stolen items online through an eBay store called ‘Anointed Liquidator.’
The Home Depot suspects Dell operated this scheme for more than 10 years, losing more than $5 million.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “Due to the success of FORCE, another retail theft crime ring is dismantled, and our Statewide Prosecutors continue to file charges against organized retail thieves. This pastor clearly skipped over the commandment—thou shall not steal. Our FORCE taskforce shut down his criminal operation stealing millions of dollars worth of merchandise from Home Depot stores across the state to resell the items on eBay. We will not tolerate organized retail theft in Florida and my office will continue to combat these criminal organizations.”
In addition to Dell, Mace, and Wild, authorities also identified Jaclyn Dell, Robert Dell’s wife and Karen Dell, Robert Dell’s mother, as conspirators, who assisted in the collection, shipment and payment of the stolen goods.
Jaclyn Dell faces a charge of conspiracy to RICO, and Karen Dell is charged with dealing in stolen property.
Dell faces charges of racketeering, conspiracy to commit racketeering and dealing in stolen property as an organizer, which are all felonies.
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