Former Radio Minister Pleads Innocent
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) _ A former radio minister was allowed to remain free without bail after pleading innocent to federal charges of defrauding listeners who donated money for a youth camp.
Troy Cecil Snowden, whose ″The Troy Snowden Ministry″ was broadcast from October 1986 to 1988, is accused in a federal indictment of fraudulently using his radio ministry to obtain property and illegal sex with a minor.
The indictment alleged that Snowden used his late-night call-in show on radio station KAAY to solicit contributions to the Troy Snowden Ministry and Lion of Judah Youth Ranch. The contributions were received at a post office box in North Little Rock.
The four-count indictment did not say how much money Snowden allegedly defrauded from listeners.
Snowden, 46, allegedly told listeners that contributions were to be invested in the construction of a youh ranch in West Plains, Mo.
He was arrested in Fort Myers Beach, Fla., on May 24, but has been free on a $100,000 unsecured bond. U.S. Magistrate Henry L. Jones Jr. allowed Snowden to remain free after Snowden entered his plea Friday in U.S. District Court.
Following his arrest, Snowden appeared before Jones, and said he couldn’t afford to hire a lawyer to defend him.
″I ain’t got nothing now,″ he said when questioned about his financial condition. ″I had a chance at some (money), but I was arrested.″
Jones appointed lawyer Marva Davis of Little Rock to represent Snowden. Jones then accepted Snowden’s innocent plea to the indictment. A jury trial was set for July 9 with U.S. District Judge Elsijane T. Roy presiding.
The bond also stipulated that Snowden could have no contact with the girl he was accused of taking from Jacksonville, Ark., to Arizona and Hattiesburg, Miss., in early 1989 to engage in sexual activity when she was 14.
″We originally asked for detention,″ said Assistant U.S. Attorney Lesa Jackson. She said the request was based on the risk Snowden might leave the United States and his danger to the community.
Jackson, however, said the U.S. Justice Department had no objection to Snowden’s release on certain conditions. Among them were that he be ordered to have no contact with about 10 other people associated with the case, stay off the KAAY radio station property in Little Rock and refrain from any additional fund raising.