A California pastor and owner of a Spanish-speaking television network has sued televangelist Benny Hinn and two associates of Hinn’s for defamation. Hinn was served the lawsuit while speaking at a “Miracle Service.” The exchange can be viewed on YouTube.
Bringing the suit is Norman Quintero, CEO of TeleAmerica Television Network and Senior Pastor of Iglesia Getsemani in Anaheim, California. Quintero is suing Hinn, Hinn-associates Donald B. Price and publicist Ronn Torossian, and Torossian’s company, 5W Public Relations.
The lawsuit was filed May 5 in Superior Court Orange County, California, and initially named Price and “Does 1-25” as defendants. Quintero then filed several amended complaints over the summer specifically adding Hinn, Torossian, and 5W to the suit.
Quintero alleges that Price published a website “to destroy Dr. Quintero’s personal reputation.” According to the lawsuit, “The Website states, or at least implies, that Dr. Quintero has been convicted on criminal charges. The statement is false.”
While the offending website norman-quintero.com is now offline, a backup copy of the website can be viewed at the Internet Archive.
Your tax-deductible gift helps our journalists report the truth and hold Christian leaders and organizations accountable. Give a gift of $30 or more to The Roys Report this month, and you will receive a copy of “The Atlas Factor: Shifting Leadership Onto the Shoulders of Jesus” by Lance Ford. To donate, click here.
Price, an officer at Benny Hinn Ministries, also runs eMinistries Consulting and Family Altar of the Air. The suit alleges Price defamed Quintero “to run (Quintero) out of business for Price’s own interests and the interests of Toufik Benedictus ‘Benny’ Hinn.”
In an online post, Quintero claims that the suit against Hinn will reveal “many secrets.” These include a “double life, donations to finance a lavish lifestyle, and more. . . . For over 40 years Benny Hinn and his staff have manipulated the system; NOW, they faced the biggest battle of their life and ministry.”
The lawsuit lacks details on Hinn’s alleged role in Quintero’s defamation, but this could surface during court testimony.
The suit asks for a jury trial and damages “of at least $500,000,” as well as legal “and equitable relief the Court may order.”
Prior court battles
The court battles between Quintero and Hinn associates began in 2021, with Price suing Quintero in Dallas County Court in Dallas, Texas. According to court documents, the suit involved “tortious interference with contract, tortious interference with prospective contract, defamation, and business disparagement, stemming from a failed real estate transaction.”
The case took a quick detour in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas before being remanded to the lower court because of a question about Quintero’s residency.
However, the court may have questioned the wrong person’s residency.
Price’s lawsuit says, “Plaintiff, Donald B. Price, is an individual residing in Dallas County, Texas.” Investigators with The Trinity Foundation, which is based in Dallas, searched Dallas County Appraisal District and found no evidence Price lives in Dallas County.
However, Price’s ministry, Family Altar of the Air, owns a 14,500 square-foot mansion worth $6 million in nearby Collin County. Family Altar of the Air also owns a Florida mansion worth over $4 million.
Julie Roys contributed to this article, which was originally published by Trinity Foundation. This article has been corrected to correctly note the worth of real estate owned by Family Altar of the Air.
Barry Bowen is a staff member of Trinity Foundation, a public nonprofit based in Dallas, Texas that has been tracking religious fraud and helping victims for over 30 years.