FLA Lawyer Got 50 Years & Got Saved!

“Crime Pays” when it causes you to get saved!

A TBN Oldie Goldie program from 1986 re-aired early Friday morning, 10/14/11. The guest was Gene Neill who gave a touching, tear-jerking testimony (above photo, the older guy). He got choked up when describing his salvation experience which had everybody else sniffling as well. Neill had been a hot shot, very successful, wealthy Florida attorney (Miami area), living the good life with the “martini crowd,” but full of void & emptiness. He considered himself an atheist. (He had gone to church as a kid but the liberal Sunday School teachers taught that the Bible was full of allegorical stories that were not true!)

At age 40, from his luxury Miami law office, & out of sheer boredom, he got involved in organized crime just for the rush/thrill of it all, bank robberies, corporate crime, etc. He loved planning the strategies but the other guys performed the actual crimes. He was “the mind behind the crimes.” This went on for three years before he was arrested & sent to prison for 50 years, 24 felonies! That was about 1971.

After he was first arrested, he determined he would just flee the area. His bailbondsman friend got him a low bond so Gene hauled off to Atlanta where he had a long time, fellow atheist friend who was also very successful & wealthy (owned car dealerships). They used to make fun of Christians calling them (us!) sissies, lol. When his friend met him at the airport, he hugged him hard, was crying, told Gene he was now a Christian, & wanted to pray for him! Gene said that blew him away because nobody had ever offered to pray for him before. When his friend prayed, Gene said he could tell his friend prayed like he actually believed someone was listening! (Of course! :)

So Gene went back to Florida & was sent to prison in Missouri. During the inmate checkin, they put him with an 80-year-old guy who had been in prison so long his prison number was 4 digits whereas Gene’s was 7 digits! Seeing this elderly prison lifer freaked him out. He spent the entire first day in his cell wondering if there really was a God. What if he had been wrong about God? So the first night he got on his knees in his cell & pleaded if God really existed to please help him. He said the Lord spoke without anger or condemnation & said, “Gene, I love you. I’ve been waiting for you for a long time!” Beautiful! Gene’s solitary confinement turned out to be a good time, he said, nobody but him, Jesus & the Bible in his cell. He read it 50 times!

The next miracle was he got transferred back to a Florida prison, closer to his family. When his wife visited she saw he had changed & vowed she was going to get saved as well & she did. Then at 2-years & 13-days the next miracle came: the prison officials came to his cell & told him, out of the blue, that he was being paroled & could leave! He had 3-cents to his name; he & his wife had no home, no money, no car, no job. From that point forward he developed a prison ministry, visiting 2,000 prisons around the world, 40 countries, to give a witness.

There were many more details, of course. TBN’s video archives have three programs with Neill as guest, two from 1986, so I’m not sure which one they showed on TV tonight:
http://www.itbn.org/index/person/lib/People/sublib/Gene+Neill

Chapters 1 & 2 of Gene’s autobiographical book, “I’m Gonna Bury You!”:
http://www.go-to-jail.org/autobiography.htm

I thought Neill must be getting old by now so I checked the SSA Death Index, & sure enough, he died last November 2010 at age 79. Sad:

NEILL, WILLIAM EUGENE 25 Feb 1931 12 Nov 2010 (P) 79 32066 (Mayo, Lafayette, FL)

Social Security Death Index Interactive Search:http://ssdi.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/ssdi.cgi?sn=Neill&lastate=FL&start=80

His “Go To Jail” website is still up but looks a little neglected (old-fashioned style). His wife may still be mailing out his book to any prisoners who request it (she is 11 years younger than him so she may be about 69 now):
“Prison Ministry Dr. Gene Neill, Worldwide Prison Ministries, including related Drug Rehab, Prison Reform and Crime Prevention Movements”:http://www.go-to-jail.org/bio.html

GENE NEILL

world wide prison ministries animation
a division of THE VOICE OF TRIUMPH, INC.,

a 501 (c)(3) tax-exempt corporation.

More Than One Life

Dr. Gene Neill was a professional race car driver, and served honorably in the United States Marine Corp in the Far East during the Korean War. He majored in Philosophy in undergraduate school and graduated with a Doctorate in Law, cum laude, from the University of Miami School of Law in 1961.

Neill served as a Public Defender in Miami for three years and was then appointed an Assistant State Attorney in the Special Prosecution Division of the Dade County State Attorney’s Office in Miami. In that capacity, he prosecuted many of the organized crime and Mafia figures in the East Coast underworld, and later became a very successful criminal defense attorney.

But when he was forty, Neill became deeply involved in organized crime and was sentenced to serve fifty years in a Federal penitentiary. Indictments under which he was sentenced included large-scale narcotics distribution, possession of machine guns, major insurance frauds and related conspiracies.

But in a dimly-lit little underground isolation cell, in the maximum security section of a Federal penitentiary, he had a dramatic conversion experience. And after a total of two years and thirteen days in prison, he was miraculously set free. Neill became a full-time prison minister and evangelist in great demand around the world, holding crusades and meetings in churches and prisons in over 40 countries.

He is the author of the best-selling book, “I’m Gonna Bury You!”, published in five languages, and has been seen and heard many times on international Christian television and radio media.

Not long after his release from prison, Neill spent three months ministering in the “underground churches” of the former Soviet Union where he was arrested three times by the Soviet Secret Police. Later, he was invited to Havana, Cuba, to an international conference on crime, where he met and talked with Fidel Castro. Subsequently, he did a speaking tour of the Prisons of Israel at the invitation of their Ministry of Police.

The outreach programs of The Voice of Triumph, Inc., a non-profit corporation, better known among the men and women in prison as World-Wide Prison Ministries, are directed from Florida.

The Voice of Triumph, Inc.
Post Office Box 78
Mayo, Florida 32066

wwpm2

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6 Comments

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6 responses to “FLA Lawyer Got 50 Years & Got Saved!

  1. THE PARADISE REPORTER

    Boo, I see the Bio I copied/pasted from his site runs off the right edge of the blog. Please read it here:

    http://www.go-to-jail.org/bio.html

    Like

  2. susan merrick

    I saw this program you write about during the night on TBN and came to the computer to look him up and get more info…thanks

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Patricia Brandon

    I just finished reading “I’m Going to Bury You” for the 2nd time. I received two insights:
    1. That the Lord wants to give us a real hunger for His Word. And if we will pray for that and follow His leading to reading more and studying more
    we will find the power of God operating in our lives beyond our expectations.
    2. In solitary confinement, Gene was able to give up all his expectations such as: getting out of prison before 50 years and really give himself to the
    Lord’s will completely and trust Him for everything. When we can do that the Lord can then mold us and make us and direct us anywhere He wants
    and our lives will be filled with overflowing joy.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you Susan, & thank you Patricia for that beautifully targeted description of the Lord’s purpose for our “prison times.” Well said! (Testimonies are such a beautiful glorious thing as they remind us of our “first love” experience with the Lord, but also encourage us to stay on the strait & narrow path!)

    Like

  5. John Kiernan

    World Wide Prison Ministries Has a new website and is still active in getting Gene’s book and Bibles into the hands of inmates across America and beyond. His wife handles it now.

    Liked by 1 person

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