Ga. megachurch pastor sued by young men over alleged sex denies claims, will talk to church

By Greg Bluestein, AP
Thursday, September 23, 2010

Megachurch head will talk Sunday about sex claims

ATLANTA — The pastor of a nationally known Atlanta-area megachurch will wait until Sunday services to speak publicly about claims he has already denied that he coerced young men into sex.

Bishop Eddie Long canceled an interview on the Tom Joyner Morning Show on Thursday. Instead, his lawyer, Craig Gillen, went on the nationally syndicated radio show and read a statement from Long. Gillen said Long would not hold an expected news conference Thursday.

The lawyer repeated Long’s denial of the allegations in the lawsuits filed this week. Three young men who were members of the New Birth Missionary Baptist Church claim Long coerced them into sexual relations with gifts including cars, cash and travel.

The lawyer said Long will address the allegations when he speaks to his church on Sunday.

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