Paul Lemmen’s New III-Percenter ‘Chaplain’ Con

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Paul H. Lemmen, one of the most infamous matchstick men in America, is at it again — but this time, he’s passing himself off as a “chaplain” to the III-Percenter militia movement. It’s not the first time that Lemmen has tried presenting himself as a religious and/or military leader with a right wing political flavor; in fact, wearing uniforms and playing priest are his two favorite scams. But this time, he seems to have associated himself with exactly the kind of people he is supposed to avoid while on parole — and that could prove to be a problem for him.

Paul Lemmen's new look

Paul Lemmen’s new look

A long record of fraud

Lemmen has convictions dating to the mid-80s for writing worthless checks, but he began his bullshit-artist career with wild claims about membership in the Irish Republican Army, then transitioned to lies about serving in Vietnam. Occupied Iraq being rife with corrupt, no-bid contracting deals, Lemmen saw an opening to enlarge on his false personas and stolen valor. Hyping his meager IT skills, he won a job with a company called Blue Iraq. But unlike too many criminal contractors, Lemmen was arrested in 2006 by the US Army Criminal Investigation Division for embezzlement and impersonating a general officer. Upon his return to the United States, Lemmen was promptly caught impersonating an Air Force general, this time at a military funeral. Held without bond and convicted of fraud in 2007, Lemmen was released in 2010 — and looked to the internet for his next marks.

By the middle of 2011, Lemmen had discovered a new hunting ground for victims at The Right Planet, a conservative political blog. “Willem Van Bever” became a valued member of the community before he started begging for donations with claims of poor health. Two weeks after he was finally outed and banned from the website in time for Christmas, Lemmen started his own blog, An Ex-Con’s View, in which he claimed to have seen the light and changed his ways.

But it didn’t take long for Lemmen to glom onto a new controversy in a bid for attention and personal gain. Adding extra drama to the Brett Kimberlin blogwar, during 2012 he claimed victimization by all sides in turn, finally repudiating his words a year later. Then he claimed to have been moved into a nursing home with cancer, and once again begged for donations. Now miraculously “cured” of a second dubious illness, Lemmen may have found another rich vein of lucre in the militia movement.

Scamming the godly III-Percenter ‘patriots’

Although he has claimed to be a priest and even an Orthodox bishop before, there is exactly zero evidence that Paul Lemmen was ever ordained by any ministry, or has ever received an education in divinity. Lemmen always relies on his command of terminology to pull off these grifts, which come undone as soon as he is pressed hard by an informed questioner. Now titling himself “Friar,” Lemmen has a fake church mission website; the PayPal donations button in his sidebar sends money directly to his plemmen55@gmail.com email address. He has used this website to pass himself off as a man of the cloth.

Lemmen has also started running a III Chaplain Corps blog which is associated with the III Percent Society for America. That organization belongs to a man named Christian Kerodin, whom Lemmen apparently approached a couple of months ago when the III-Percenters got their panties in a bunch over something I said. Kerodin claims that his organization is applying for 501(c)(4) status while he collects donations, but there is plenty of reason to doubt him, as he has his own history of fraud and sketchy dealings under his birth name: Christian Hyman.

Christian "Kerodin" Hyman

Christian “Kerodin” Hyman

Although Hyman was just a heating and air conditioning repairman, in 2003 he tried to cash in on terrorism fears by extorting top mall CEOs in the Washington, DC area, threatening to mention them unfavorably in his alarmist reports on mall security unless they paid for his consulting services as an ‘expert.’ Federal agents also found a sawed-off shotgun in his apartment. Convicted of extortion and firearms charges in 2004, he served 30 months in prison. After release, he had his name legally changed to Kerodin in a bid to escape his past.

As near as I can tell, Hyman next appeared on the public radar early last year as one of the key players in The Citadel, a proposed 2-3,000 acre real estate development for “patriots” in rural Idaho. Stephen Colbert joked about this scheme, which smells incredibly scammy and will probably never actually happen.

The criticism is sparked by the fact that one of the key players linked to the unlikely-sounding venture is three-time convicted felon Christian Allen Kerodin, a Maryland contractor who has apparently used various aliases and whose birth name was Christian Hyman. His wife or partner, Holly Ann Kerodin, has been involved in questionable charity, counseling, publishing and other ventures that have failed, various critics say.

[...]

Citadel is now accepting $208 “application fees” for Patriot applicants, who must pass a screening test to be accepted in the community Kerodin and his partners say they are planning. “Marxists, Socialists, Liberals and Establishment Republicans will likely find that life in our community is incompatible with their existing ideology and preferred lifestyles,” its website says.

Paul Lemmen is still on parole

Paul Lemmen is not supposed to be associating with felons like Christian Hyman/Kerodin — especially if further flimflammery is in the offing, which appears to be the case here. I suspect the long list of ritual items he asks his “mission” blog readers to supply is actually an inducement to send money, since many of them are not the sort of items that people have lying around as spares. Perhaps Lemmen thinks that religion, like politics, offers a risk-free scam; if so, he is sorely mistaken, because this is the sort of thing that federal parole officers can and do investigate. It will not take long for an officer of average intellect to confirm that Lemmen’s “mission” is not sanctioned by any Orthodox church.

Like any “leaderless” movement, patriot organization is a huckster act. It is not hard to maintain — even if, like these folks, you have had your gun rights revoked due to felonies. As demonstrated by the great fizzling of recent rallying efforts by these “organizations” during the “American Spring” and Summer’s border crisis, the III Percenter movement is really just a culture characterized by online extremist speech. Like any good operator, Paul Lemmen can master the lingo and the proper tone with very little effort; all he sees are easy marks.

I have contacted Mr. Lemmen’s supervising parole officer for comment and will update this post if they respond.

Update: this post originally had the wrong screenshot from an interview with Christian Hyman/Kerodin. I apologize for the error.

About Author

Army veteran. Rabbit caretaker. Metalhead. Student of right wing culture wars since 1987. Andrew Breitbart's lunatic cultists annoyed me, so I blogged here as Xenophon for over a year before unmasking to become Editor. Follow me on Twitter or at my World War I blog.

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  • Mark in MD

    Fingers crossed that Lemmen rips off the likes of Hoge, Walker and Ali somehow. How fitting would that be for that righteous crowd of scumbags?

  • Bill Schmalfeldt

    When life hands you Lemmens…

  • Bill Schmalfeldt

    I’m just gonna call him “Friar Schmuck” from now on.

    • http://www.osborneink.com/ OsborneInk

      GOLDEN.

  • Mark in MD

    Holy crap! Now Hoge is officially working alongside this convicted felon to steal money. Wow… This is going to play great in all of Hoge’s lawsuits! Ha!!

    http://stdismasorthodoxmission.wordpress.com/2014/07/28/welcome-the-iaocs-interim-archdiocesan-treasurer/

    • Haradanohime

      At least it’s not Ali? Though I don’t know if Hoge is much better at this point.

  • Bill Schmalfeldt
    • Mark in MD

      I beat you to that one, Bill. :)

  • James

    These guys are just too much, I can’t stop laughing at them… So he thinks of himself as the thief who died with Jesus?

  • William A. Ferguson

    My irony meter just exploded.

  • Bill Schmalfeldt

    Have you had any luck with that Probation Officer?

    • Bill Schmalfeldt

      If you need help, let me know.

  • Bill Schmalfeldt
  • Haradanohime

    I did not even know there was such a church as American Orthodox. Apparently there is an American Orthodox but this page seems not to have anything to do with them. I did a search on Independent American Orthodox Mission and the ONLY thing that came up close was Lemmen’s site. I also do not think should his “flock” see the words of this self titled Friar they would see anything resembling a penitent person.

  • jen

    this website certainly has a way of finding all the creepos…. hey but I guess if you’re going to be a matchstick man, you’re a matchstick man for life? Or something like that? Also, maybe you’re wrong and he isn’t scamming people, maybe he’s legit starting a cult… Seems to be a trend with what’s left of teh Tea Party

  • Sarah Palin’s Mangina

    I went to Google this guy and was impressed with how easy it is to find out he’s a fraudster. “Paul H. Lemmen (born 13 July 1955, Port Huron, Michigan) is a military impostor and convicted criminal, specializing in fraud. To various acquaintainces, Lemmen claimed to have been an intelligence officer in the Irish Republican Army before coming to the United States. Later, he changed his story to having joined theUnited States Air Force in 1972 and serving with the 41st Air Rescue and Recovery Squadron in Saigon for six months in 1974. Other service claims include spending 1980-1988 as an intelligence agent in an AFSOC unit, including an assignment in Beirut in 1983. ”

    What is an “ill percenter” anyway? Is that a sovereign citizen or something?

    And as far as whatever his current scam is…. Several convicted criminals, all on probation….Working with Armed militia members, gun shops and others that believes that the feds literally have no authority?

    And then there’s a man who went to prison who is a con man who wants to have his own religion and is talking about needing robes for his alter boys? Whose kids is he going to claim as “alter boys”? somebody he went to prison with?

    • Paul Lemmen is a Scammer

      “And as far as whatever his current scam is…. Several convicted criminals, all on probation….Working with Armed militia members, gun shops and others that believes that the feds literally have no authority?”

      And therein lies the rub a dub dub. So the question I have is: are the federal probation people aware of this conduct, and if so, do they approve of this con artist’s current activity? It appears as if he is still scamming. Yes, he could start his own church, and yes he could get other shady people to “help” bring some credibility to it, but at the end of the day it is a potential scam unfolding right before their eyes.

      So do the federal probation people allow such scams or shady dealings to get going real well first before they shutter it? Or do they allow such conduct because Lemmen has his probation officer under his con artists spell? These types of con artists are very adept at getting authority figures to buy into their scams. So I would assume that the best course of action is to notify his probation officers supervisor or the court who is managing him, which I believe is in Tennessee which has supervisory control over him, while he resides in Florida and let them know the evidence collected and a response from them required.

      Of course he will call them up and say its all some smear attack, and that he is starting a church because its his right to do so, but in a way he still has limited or few rights available since he is under federal supervision. So in a large way he has no rights when it comes to anything like this, especially raising money or running some type of preacher/church thing where donated money would be a requirement and he has dubious credentials to go with it.

      The writer of this story should contact the court supervisors and let them know about this unfolding potential scam, and make sure they are watching it very closely, especially in light of Lemmen already pulling the minister church scam and the he created Imodium scam on the other group online which is talked about at this link

      http://www.therightplanet.com/2012/06/sticky-guest-post-ann-barnhardt-stop-drinking-the-lemmenade/

      “With Lemmen, it is all about the details. He researches his victims and his cons meticulously, and wins people’s confidence largely by dropping key words, phrases and details in order to appear credible. He researches and learns whatever jargon he needs, and then wields it to engender trust from his victims. This is how he infiltrated the U.S. Military in Iraq. This is how he was able to pass himself off as black retired physician “Willem Van Bever” on TheRightPlanet.com And, as we will see, this is how he is now attempting to pass himself off as a devout and pious Catholic, and also as a conservative patriot.”

      What I find interesting is that he feels impervious to getting caught, and instead he goes full in as if to say you can’t catch me because I’m too good.

      “Finally, in the fall of 2011 “Van Bever” claimed to be dying of stage IV pancreatic cancer. Some RightPlanet readers, crestfallen at the news of “Van Bever’s” illness, began sending him gifts, which “Van Bever” happily accepted. Suspicious, Sard now vetted “Willem Van Bever”, albeit belatedly. He could find no record of anyone named Willem Van Bever anywhere in Florida, much less in Van Bever’s claimed residence of St. Petersburg.”

      Now he just pulled this same con off on a number of people a few months ago. He claimed he was writing his last post and he was going to die any minute. Then a few months go by and he has a miracle cure for his problem, which I researched and found there is no such thing of a miracle cure. Once you have what he claimed he had, you die from it, or are on dialysis for life until you succumb to it. If any cures were in the offing, it would be all over the internet, as many people suffer from this very same condition, and they have no miracle cure produced. Yet, in Hospice, a place where one goes when one has few if any funds and or family to take care of you, and where health care is sub par at best, he had doctors who were beyond the pale and cured him.

      I noted that his face looked yellow in pictures he sent out back then, yet that suddenly cleared up over time, which one can easily do with Photoshop. Yet people are asked to buy into his scam because he got ordained by the III percenters, which is also a dubious con job too. Where does the scamming end one wonders?

      As I said, if one studies Lemmen, they can quickly see he will never quit conning people, as he probably wants to go out of this world practicing his dark art art come what may.

      So the writer here needs to step up to the plate and actually get someone at the court involved in this process so they can better manage this guy before hundreds or even thousands of people get scammed. If you cant get anyone to respond, I would write a letter to the Judge in his case outlining everything here and all evidence collected and then ask the court to get him some better supervision or to revoke his probation since he is still under 5 years supervised release. Lastly, I would contact the local area police department and notify them that they have a probationer in their area who is building a scam and ask them to investigate him and whomever he is dealing with. I would also mention that he has now hooked up with gun toting nut cases who want to overthrow the government..

      At least you caught this guy red handed. Great story, keep up the good work.

      • Sard

        FWIW: Listen, I’m not going to deny I got punked by this guy at first. But, remember, he punked the U.S. military in Iraq, for crying out loud! This guy takes the cake as far as con artists go. But several of us knew he was not legit pretty early on. He was just making outrageous claims that were becoming harder and harder to ignore, let alone believe.

        But I had to be absolutely sure before I came out and publicly stated that Lemmen was a complete fraud. What if I was wrong? Think libel and slander.

        What I just can’t get over about Lemmen is he always uses his real name. This is some sort of mental illness this guy has. I was able to obtain irrefutable proof through a thorough investigation. I confronted him directly over the phone, and he folded like a cheap card table. That’s when I booted every vestige of that maggot off my site.

        Additionally, he was impersonating both men and women in the comment sections. And I just banned them all. I very well may have banned some legit people. I just didn’t care at that point. It was a very unpleasant experience, to say the least.

  • Bill Schmalfeldt

    For what it’s worth, I wrote to both Lemmen and Hoge yesterday with questions you can see in my story at schmafeldt.org. Here’s Lemmen’s response.

    “I decline to answer as those questions of public interest are answered within the blog. Do your research, then ask valid questions not intended to advance your smear of meor the mission.
    I will. however answer question six for you. No, mainly because I am not on parole. A parolee is someone who has been released before the end of their sentence or before the statutory percentage of 85% when release for good behavior. I am under the court’s supervision for another six months, reporting electronically once a month and occasional visits from a member of the US Courts Probation office in Tampa. I am not prohibited in any way from being a person of responsibility in any corporation. My only restriction is to seek the permission if I am to accept financial control or manage financial accounts. As there is, to the best of my knowledge, a zero balance in the Mission’s PayPal account and there have been no donations, your question is moot. The only people who have standing to question anything about the PayPal account are those who have made a donation and had that donation accepted. Thus, no one has standing. All costs have been paid out of my meagre pocket. Likewise, the only items for celebration of the Divine Liturgy have come from my personal possessions and are now the property of the Mission. If you are truly interested and not seeking to further you campaign against me, on the 1st of each month, an accounting of donations (first name and last initial only) for the previous month. Likewise with a physical donation.
    (BTW, what happened to your brave statement that you would call me “Friar Schmuck”?)

    ​+​Paul H. Lemmen”

    Here’s Hoge’s from his blog. Note the attempt to denigrate my experience as “how dare I ask the Grand and Glorious HOGE to explain his actions?”

    “A former amateur investigative reporter who is now trying to work the
    religion page has asked several questions over the last day. Here is my
    answer:

    I find your lack of faith disturbing.

    UPDATE—If an intrepid religious report knew his stuff and he wanted to question the bona fides
    of someone serving as a treasurer of a religious fund, he would
    allude to John 12:4-6 Of course, that would require a working knowledge
    of his subject matter.”

    John 12:4-6 (NIV) says:

    4 But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him, objected, 5 “Why wasn’t this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year’s wages.[b]” 6 He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.

    So, what is Hoge saying here? He’s likening himself to Judas? What gives?

  • Bill Schmalfeldt

    I have been officially excommunicated from contacting the most holy Metropolitan Archbishop Paul H. Lemmen with any more questions, under penalty of torture.

    • When Life Gives You Lemmens…

      Screw that fraud. He was released in 2010 with a 5 year supervised release. He is violating his supervision and seems to be going back to his old wicked ways before he is even off supervision. My guess is he will be back in prison on new cases before his head spins one turn. All it will take is someone giving him money and then complaining about it later when they feel he has defrauded them to have them arrest him again for impersonation and a host of other charges.,

    • Haradanohime

      How can he excommunicate someone he declared Anathema the other day on Hogewash?

      • Bill Schmalfeldt

        All I know is I even MENTION Lemon Scented Tidy Bowl, he will clap me in irons. For JESUS!

    • James

      Do you need information on this man’s probation officer? I know somebody who can look it up for you and will post the information here

      • Bill Schmalfeldt

        That would be cool!

        • James

          His sentence stems from TN, but his federal parole is managed out of Middle Florida. I could not find a name but maybe you can make a few calls.>> http://www.usprobation.com/

  • Chump Cahnage Fraud

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rcUr1VBAoxk

    The big days of religious fraud are gone. Cept most religion is a fraud, anyway

    But I doubt this guy could pull a 9 million dollar scam

    This Lemmen guy doesn’t seem smart enough to pull such a scam against real religious folks

    But militia members, who fear all forms of government regulations, including taxes, probably have some meth money to throw his way

  • James Miller

    Uh, sorry, wrong guy. The photo in the middle is NOT Kerodin in the photo. It’s me, and I’d appreciate you getting your facts straight. Thanks, James Miller

    • FU Citadel

      This James Miller? https://www.blogger.com/profile/14995088279331568405

      You’re still a Citadel whack-o. Your attempt at nutjob sovereignty will fail like everything else you people touch. I hope you get the Waco death you’re hoping for.

    • http://www.osborneink.com/ OsborneInk

      I took screenshots from the video of you guys talking with Glenn Beck and inserted the wrong one prior to publication. My apologies for the error.

  • William A. Ferguson

    So…did Lemmen’s PO get back to you?

    • Mark in MD

      Must have because now Lemmen’s new scamsite has been deleted. Poor Lemmen’s scam. :(

      • WJJ Bloke

        All is proceeding as I have foreseen…

        • http://www.breitbartunmasked.com Hypatia Livingston

          No activity for hours and hours. hrrrrrrmmmm and all the tweets announcing Hoge’s participation are gone, too

          poor scammy scam

          rest in peace

          • WJJ Bloke

            Hoge’s scammy scam scam is imploding on him. So instead of sticking it out with Lemmen and mixing himself up in Lemmen’s scams, he shuts it all down, refuses to discuss it, and bails on him. Hilarious #fail. Now where is that Hoge popcorn?

          • http://www.breitbartunmasked.com Hypatia Livingston

            I think Hoge is selling Thin Mints now. Prolly door to door in a girl scout uniform alongside Lemmen as Scout Master.

          • WJJ Bloke

            Ahh yes, Girl Scout Mint scam. I can see Hoge and Lemmen selling candy door to door and pocketing the proceeds lol.

          • http://www.breitbartunmasked.com Hypatia Livingston

            It appears he may have been quietly booted from the “society”

            From the main blog:

            http://iiipercentsociety.blogspot.com/

            “We are not a social club.

            If you are expecting to receive a list of the Patriots who live in or
            near your AO, with full contact details – nope. It has been suggested
            we open a forum for those Members who do choose to communicate with one
            another, or quietly sit in the back of the room and watch. Once we find
            the more secure such platforms, we’ll look into it. There is a
            dark-side potential there – without constant monitoring, it only takes
            one or two idiots/plants to say/do something that creates a ton of bad
            press for the Society, and potentially indictments. None of us intend
            to allow it to be that easy…

            But we will work out a way for those of you who wish to find other
            members and build your networks. Please be patient – we have some REAL
            brains and people with experience in such matters in the organization,
            but everyone works a day job and we were already too busy when this idea
            was birthed. But I promise we’ll get there.

            Stay safe, Patriots.

          • WJJ Bloke

            So it appears from this screen shot that he is no longer part of their community. Wasn’t he listed there before though? Seems like maybe they see him as a scammer and have booted him or maybe he just quietly left because they thought that he would bring them down to his scammy level?

          • http://www.breitbartunmasked.com Hypatia Livingston

            Not sure. He was a member of the Chaplain Corps — which I think was an offshoot, not the leadership

          • http://www.osborneink.com/ OsborneInk

            Correct, it was a stub that I think was created for Lemmen.

          • http://www.osborneink.com/ OsborneInk

            Verrrry interesting.

          • Haradanohime

            So his took down the mission site? Anyone seen if he just moved locations?

          • http://www.osborneink.com/ OsborneInk

            The Eye of Sauron is on him, so it won’t escape our notice.

          • Bill Schmalfeldt

            Does this mean Hoge can’t be treasurer no more?

          • Paulie
  • Sard

    Thanks for posting this! I run The Right Planet blog. Paul H. Lemmen is the worst pathological liar I have EVER encountered in my life. He never, ever stops. And he loves the attention, good or bad. This maggot created havoc at my blog. And I can smell the POS from a mile away.

    My advice to ANYBODY who runs into this POS: STAY CLEAR! He always claims to be sick and dying to elicit sympathy. And he’s been pulling this “Christian” schtick for a while now. Just search: Paul H. Lemmen. He is a stolen valor MAGGOT! And he best pray we never meet face to face. It will not go well for him. He’s up to his old tricks again. So, just an FYI for anybody who’s paying attention.

    Back out quiet,

    Brent Parrish
    therightplanet.com

    • Paul Lemmens Nutz

      Thank you Sard for coming over to tell us about this POS. One hopes that the probation department or the courts will do something to this con artist soon. I don’t hold my breath though. But the more people that put content out there about this guy the better. Maybe that will keep people aware of just how easy it is to be conned by losers like him.

      • Sard

        I always struggle a bit to post anything on this worthless POS. He LOVES attention of any kind. Even if it’s the worst sort. He’s just plain nuts. One of the worst characters I’ve encountered. But I might cross-post this. We may have different views on politics, but everybody needs to beware of this #*&^#@ maggot.

        • Paul Lemmens Nutz

          I agree Sard, politics really doesn’t enter into it. Everybody is entitled to their own opinions right left middle doesn’t matter, everyone has a right to think or feel the way they do. But when it comes to losers like Lemmen, people need to be aware of him no matter which isle they tend to sit with. The guy is a true piece of crap, and people need to be aware of him as much as possible, especially in the online community where he preys on people the most. Again, thank you Sard for coming over and giving your opinions and letting us know more about him.