Mormon critics challenge church’s tax-exempt status

HONOLULU — Mormon critics are asking the U.S. Internal Revenue Service to investigate allegations that the church uses a Hawaii cultural center to commit tax fraud.

Gay-rights activist and Mormon critic Fred Karger delivered a complaint to a Honolulu IRS office Thursday asking for an investigation into alleged tax abuses involving the Polynesian Cultural Center, Brigham Young University-Hawaii and a development company.

The complaint comes after Mormon critics aired television ads last year asking current and former Mormons to divulge information that could harm the church’s tax-exempt status.

A church spokesman declined to comment.

Karger says it’s unlikely the tax-exempt status will be revoked, but he hopes the attention forces changes. He’s also seeking investigations from other government agencies.

The Utah-based church has 16 million members worldwide, including 74,000 in Hawaii.

  1. harry oyama August 16, 2018 8:34 pm Reply

    All churches should be taxed, they are a bunch of free loading crooks preaching the cool aid to ignorant followers. The Mormon church is based on some self proclaimed “prophet” Joe Smith a mass murder pedophile along with his co-founder, Bigham Young and their white followers dressed up as native Indians and killed hundreds of men and boys of a wagon train heading West and took the women and girls for their own.

    Joe Smith even took several 14 year old girls as his wives so I’m not the least surprised their decendents have the same attitude towards Polynesia culture as just another means to line their own pockets.

  2. debra kekaualua August 19, 2018 8:47 pm Reply

    Mormon leaders here have been noted to have “purchased” the heiau bell stone from Wailuanuiahoano, where it sits in his front yard alongside the river house just below this site. This site actually has a federal bench notating when it was highlighted as a special zone and also was a tourist attraction before it was destroyed by heavy equipment and the DLNR priviledged “owners”.

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