Archive for Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Ex-music director pleads to church fire

December 16, 2009

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— A former church music director has pleaded guilty in federal court to setting fire to a Leavenworth church where he worked in order to collect kickbacks from contractors.

Carva Lee White admitted Monday that he set fire to the Sunflower Missionary Baptist Church on Oct. 31, 2008, as part of an attempt to commit mail fraud.

Prosecutors say the 45-year-old Kansas City, Mo., man told a church pastor a week before the blaze about a plan to burn the building and collect kickbacks from contractors.

The Kansas fire marshal determined the fires had been intentionally set in various locations in the church.

White is scheduled to be sentenced in March. He faces 10 years on the arson charge and up to 20 years on the attempted mail fraud count.

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