Eddie Long Accused of Affairs With Young Men
6:00AM ET September 22nd, 2010
Contributor : Hip Hop Blog Staff
A Rocky Williform Company
Megachurch pastor Bishop Eddie Long is at the center of a media firestorm. The pastor of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Atlanta is facing allegations that he used his position as pastor and a religious authority to coerce young men into sexual relationships with him. Suits have been filed by Anthony Flagg, 21, and Maurice Murray Robinson, 20, charging Long with inappropriate sexual behavior that allegedly began when the men were 17 and 18.
"Long shared a bedroom and engaged in intimate sexual contact with plaintiff Flagg including kissing, massaging, masturbating of plaintiff Flagg by defendant Long and oral sexual contact," the suit says. Long is alleged to have taken Robinson to Auckland, New Zealand, in October 2008 for his 18th birthday and engaged in oral sex with him. "Following the New Zealand Trip, Defendant Long regularly engaged in sexual touching, and other sexual acts with Plaintiff Robinson," Robinson's suit alleges.
"Everybody knows that a bishop or church pastor ... cannot have any sort of sexual relations or sexual relationship with one of your parishioners," said Robinson's lawyer, B.J. Bernstein, said at a news conference Tuesday evening. "And even worse to have it with two young men who trusted him and got to know him at a very young age." Robinson was arrested in and charged with burglary in connection with a break-in at Long's office. An iPhone, iPad and other items totaling more than $1,300 worth of merchandise was stolen.
"It is very unfortunate that someone has taken this course of action," said Long spokesman Ari Franklin. "Our law firm will be able to respond once attorneys have had an opportunity to review the lawsuit."
Long is infamous for his anti-gay stance and has been called 'one of the most virulently homophobic black leaders in the religiously based anti-gay movement," by the Southern Poverty Law Center.