Jerry Falwell Jr. and Giancarlo GrandaPhoto: composite
The resignation of homophobic evangelical Jerry Falwell Jr. from the presidency of Liberty University has focused mostly on his unzipped pants pic, his slurred “apology” for it and Giancarlo Granda, the former pool boy who claims to have had a consensual years-long three-way relationship with Falwell and his wife, Becki.
But there’s actually a second young man who’s speaking out about the Falwells. Gordon Bello, a lawyer, claims to have had a “personal relationship” with Becki and he’s also friends with Granda. In fact, he and Granda run an LGBTQ-friendly hostel in Miami that the Falwells purchased for $4.7 million in 2013.
Related: Liberty University taps an anti-LGBTQ extremist to replace Jerry Falwell Jr. after years of scandals
Granda and Bello are high school friends, but they met the Falwells separately. Granda worked as a pool boy at Fontainebleau Hotel while Bello was a pool attendant at the Loews Miami Beach hotel.
In 2017, Bello sued the Falwells for his stake in the hostel. In his lawsuit, he claimed that he and his father pitched Falwell on the hostel idea after Granda introduced them, according to The Christian Post.
Bello wanted a 25% share in the profits similar to what the Falwells allegedly offered Granda, but the matter between Bello and the Falwells ended up being privately settled out of court for an undisclosed sum.
Now, Bello claims that “Giancarlo is not telling the full truth of what happened,” between the pool boy and the Falwells. “I hope he finds the courage to do so,” Bello added.
However, Bello didn’t expand on the sort of “personal relationship” he had with Becki or what “full truth” Granda might be holding back.
Granda’s relationship with the evangelical power couple eventually went south and when he tried to end the sexual relationship, they ended up in a business dispute that resulted in several lawsuits related to the money the Falwells gave him to buy the hostel.
Around the time the Bellos separately sued the Falwells, Tom Arnold released a recorded conversation that suggested that Donald Trump’s fixer Michael Cohen had helped Falwell resolve an “embarrassing” scandal that involved “racy personal” photos he was being blackmailed with, a scandal that many speculated at the time involved Granda because of the timing and locations of events.
In the recording, Cohen said that someone had somehow come into possession of “a bunch of photographs, personal photographs” of Falwell, which he described as the kind usually kept “between husband and wife.”
“I actually have one of the photos,” Cohen said during the conversation. “It’s terrible.”
Then there’s also Benjamin Crosswhite, a Liberty graduate and personal trainer who said he was 23 when the Falwells started using his services in 2011. Granda said he was 20 when the Falwells approached him to start a years-long sexual relationship.
Records show that Falwell once took Crosswhite on a trip in Liberty’s private jet to Miami. Falwell said that he wanted Crosswhite present during his annual physical with his personal physician in Miami to discuss his training and nutrition plan.
A year after meeting Crosswhite, Falwell urged Liberty officials to sell an 18-acre racquet sports and fitness facility for two million dollars to Crosswhite. Because the young trainer didn’t have two million dollars on-hand, Liberty agreed to rent the facility from him for their tennis team and paid him $650,000 upfront for the first nine years of the lease. The other $1.2 million Crosswhite paid was covered by a loan that Liberty made to him at a low 3% annual rate.
So the recent college graduate was able to purchase a $2 million facility for his business because the seller – Liberty University – gave him the money to buy it from them.