In her church, trust among members was a given.
So when Elizabeth Morgan came into a large chunk of money from her late husband's life insurance policy and a malpractice settlement from his unexpected death, she felt comfortable putting it in the hands of a Jehovah's Witnesses elder to invest in real estate.
She bought $764,000 worth of promissory notes from Raymond L. Knowles, a financial consultant and former missionary whom she'd known for many years from the congregation. Knowles assured her that her investment would be safe and that she'd get a high interest rate, Morgan said.
For two years, she received monthly interest checks. But then the checks started coming late, and finally, not at all. Morgan pleaded with Knowles to get her investment back, but it never happened.