*Citing an unnamed source, the web site reddingnewsreview.com is reporting that New Birth Missionary Baptist Church pastor Bishop Eddie Long is paying nearly $25 million to settle claims he had sexual relationships with four young male parishioners, and has also given an apology to the accusers.

The source, who claims to be familiar with the details of the settlement and did not wish to be identified, said that Long refused to give a public apology, which ended up costing him more, according to Redding’s editor and publisher Robert Redding Jr.

Redding writes:

What began as a $2 million agreement to settle the case for each of the four men quickly rose to $5.5 million for the respective plaintiffs, the source said, only because Long refused to publically admit guilt.

The men are to divide $2.2 million equally and then receive $400,000 in payments until the money is paid out over the next 20 years, the source said. The final figure comes to $22 million for the four men and $2.8 million for the plaintiffs’ attorneys.

The church had already been paying these four young men $40,000 annually each before any charges were filed, the source said.

Still, Long did give a private apology, the source said. Redding News Review has decided not to print the source’s paraphrasing of that apology.

Long could not be reach at press time.