One in custody, two others sought in 'prayer money' scheme - CBS46 News

One in custody, two others sought in 'prayer money' scheme

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Bernard Candies (Source: Winder Police) Bernard Candies (Source: Winder Police)
Marvin Scott and Sylvester Jackson (Source: Winder Police) Marvin Scott and Sylvester Jackson (Source: Winder Police)

One man has been arrested and two others are being sought after they allegedly scammed a man out of a large sum of money, using religion as a guise.

The victim told the Winder Police Department that the men had followed him into a store and approached him to ask about his religious beliefs. The men told the victim that they were seeking donations for a children's charity.

They convinced him that they could increase the amount of money he donated by praying over it in unison. 

The men took the victim to his bank and he withdrew a large amount of money and placed it in an envelope. The men then placed the envelope into what they called a "prayer cloth" and all prayed over the money, asking for the amount to be multiplied.

Afterward, the men told the victim to take the cloth and envelope home and not to open either one or the prayer would not work. Unbeknownst to the victim, the two men had switched the envelope inside the cloth to one filled with newspaper.

After an investigation, The Winder Police Department was able to arrest one of the men accused in the scheme. He has been identified as 61 year-old Bernard Candies. He is charged with felony fraud, exploitation of the elderly and a probation violation.

An arrest warrant was issued for the two other men involved. They've been identified as 63 year-old Sylvester Jackson and 63 year-old Marvin Scott. Both are being sought on charges of felony fraud and exploitation of the elderly.

The Winder Police Department believes the men are not from the area and may have performed the scam in surrounding locations. 

If you have any information about the case or have been a victim of a similar crime, you're asked to contact the Winder Police Department at 770-867-2156.

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