Sheriff: Suspects stole $1.5 million from churches in 14 different states

Fayette County Sheriff Office’s deputies have busted a nationwide theft ring targeting donations church congregations mailed in.

In all, investigators said 36 churches were victimized just in Fayette County for more than $150,000.

Fayette County Sheriff Barry Babb said the ring operates out of Texas and went to metro Atlanta to steal offering checks out of church mailboxes during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fayette County deputies said law enforcement arrested three people from the Houston. They have also identified and are looking for three more suspects. They say this ring has as many as 17 members who have stolen $1.5 million from churches in 14 different states, including Georgia.

Babb said the churches in Fayette County were robbed of $154,000 in checks, which were deposited at Houston-area ATMs.

Some churches have added locks on their mailboxes.