By Rene Stutzman, Orlando Sentinel
5:58 PM EST, February 17, 2011
SANFORD - A Lake Mary book publisher is suing televangelist and faith healer Benny Hinn, saying he violated a morality clause in their contract when he began an "inappropriate relationship" with another evangelist, and thus, must pay $250,000.
In August, Hinn admitted to a friendship with evangelist Paula White after The National Enquirer published photos of them in Rome, holding hands.
Hinn was married at the time. His wife, Suzanne, had filed for divorce a few months earlier.
Three years earlier, Hinn had signed a three-book deal with Strang Communications Co. of Lake Mary. He was paid a $300,000 advance on the first one, "Blood in the Sand," according to the suit.
Hinn acknowledged to his publisher "his inappropriate relationship" with White in August, according to the suit, and agreed that the publisher should get back its money, but he has yet to pay up.
Hinn's lawyer, Miles Archer Woodlief of Mill Valley, Calif., did not return a phone call Thursday.
In a letter attached to the suit, Strang also accused Hinn of violated the contract by failing to work hard enough to market "Blood in the Sand".
He failed to make television appearances to promote it, including several on "700 Club", wrote Strang attorney Chris Vlahos.
The suit was filed Tuesday in state circuit court.
Hinn lives in suburban Los Angeles. He moved there in 1999 after building a national audience at his faith-healing center, World Outreach Center on Forest City Road in Orlando, where he preached for 14 years.
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