John Todd "former Illuminati" member exposed as fraud

by Mark Dice

            John Todd, also known as “John Todd Collins” or “Lance Collins” was one of the first, if not the first person to claim to be a former member of the Illuminati in modern times.  In the late 1970s Todd began a series of speaking engagements at various evangelical Churches and organizations in what he said was his mission to expose the workings and plans of the Illuminati.  He claimed to be a high level member who decided to become a Christian in 1972, and leave the organization.  At this time there were several others who were claiming to be former Satanists turned Christians and were now trying to warn people about the occult, but Todd actually claimed to be a high level Illuminati member himself, and not just someone who dabbled in the occult.  

            By listening to the recorded speeches he gave, he did know a fair amount about the Illuminati, their symbolism, and their organizations and operations.  Several hours of his lectures are available on the Internet in mp3s.  John Todd is actually a fairly dynamic and confident speaker.  He speaks with authority, and sounds like he is extremely knowledgeable on the Illuminati.  It’s important to note that in the 1970s, hardly anyone knew anything about the Illuminati or the New World Order.  There was no Internet that anyone could use to quickly look up his claims and very few books had been published on such material.  As we dissect John Todd’s claims and cross examine them with what we now know to be true about Freemasonry and the Illuminati, most of them completely fall apart and are undoubtedly a series of fabrications and lies.  Despite being a fraud, the legend of John Todd is fascinating to explore and he proves to be a very talented story teller or possibly a very persuasive compulsive liar.

            John Todd appeared on the scene in the late 1970s shortly after Gary Allen’s book, None Dare Call It Conspiracy was published in 1972 which brought the Illuminati conspiracy out in the open again after it had laid dormant since the 1920s and 30s with the publication of Secret Societies and Subversive Movements by Nesta Webster, and Occult Theocrasy by Edith Miller.  These books were the primary sources of Todd’s information, and he made reference to Allen during one of his speeches which can be heard on the Internet.  (See None Dare Call It  Conspiracy page 62) (See Secret Societies and Subversive Movements page 56)  (See Occult Theocrasy page 59) 

            The other source John Todd had learned about the Illuminati from was Myron Fagan’s audio recordings which were released in the late 1960s.  (See Myron Fagan page 208)  Todd basically regurgitated information about the Illuminati that he learned from Allen and Fagan’s work, but presented it as if he had first hand knowledge of it from being personally involved. 

            One of Todd’s claims that deviated from the typical Illuminati takeover plan was that he alleged when he was in the Illuminati he oversaw eight million dollars that was given to Pastor Chuck Smith, founder of Cavalry Chapel, for the purpose of launching the Christian Rock industry.  Todd claimed that the lyrics didn’t matter, and that the music had a demonic beat that was being used to brainwash the listeners.  He also claimed that Jerry Falwell had been bought off by the Illuminati with a fifty million dollar donation.   

            Another bizarre claim unique to Todd was that the novel Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand was supposedly written in code specifically for Illuminati members as a blueprint for their world takeover, and that only Illuminati members were supposed to read the book and the publishers were concerned that the book had become so popular since it would give away the Illuminati’s plan. 

            More red flags continue to come up the more one listens to Todd.  He referred to The Necronomicon as being a real book that he once saw and held in his hand when he was an Illuminist.  The Necronomicon is a fictional book that was mentioned several times in the writings of 1920’s horror writer H.P. Lovecraft.  Todd kept calling the Necronomicon, the Necromonicon.  Several times during his speech, he mispronounced the name of this book.  One would think that a high level Illuminati member would know the proper pronunciation of this sacred book.  He called it the original occult bible.

            “There are only three copies in existence today.  One is in the town…in the Saint Petersburg cathedral in the USSR.  One is in New York City, no I’m sorry.  One is in Glasgow and one is in London.  I saw….the one from the London museum was in New York for a while and I got to look at it and hold it when I was in the occult,” he said as he stumbled over his words quite extensively when trying to explain his alleged contact with the book. 

            In H.P. Lovecraft’s novels it is said that there are only five copies in existence, an idea that Todd essentially parroted as he tried to describe the book to one of his audiences.  No such book was ever at the London museum, or any museum for that matter, and Todd’s claims of holding it in his hand was completely unpractical.  In 1973, several years before John Todd began speaking about the Illuminati, a man claiming that he had discovered the real Necronomicon published what was an obvious hoax and an attempt to cash in on the legend of the book.  (See The Necronomicon page 129)

            Aside from not seeming very clear on several aspects of the Illuminati, and claiming to have seen an actual copy of The Necronomicon, Todd also claimed to have been a Green Beret in the Vietnam War.  As more people investigated Todd’s allegations, it was discovered that he was a general clerk/typist.  When confronted with this discovery, he claimed that the Illuminati must have altered his records in an attempt to discredit him.  He would frequently claim his life was in danger and that numerous attempts had been made to have him killed.

(Excerpt from The Illuminati: Facts & Fiction by Mark Dice - Available on, Kindle and Nook)

            John Todd had pieced together various quotes and secret society history, and organized it into what sounded like an honest confession, but any modern student of the Illuminati can clearly see Todd for the fraud that he was.  In one of his speeches he said, “I’m going to read you the initiation to become a member of the council of 33, the 3rd, or actually the second highest council within the Masons, I mean within the Illuminati.”  He then goes on to read, “When the Mason learns that the key to the warrior on the block is the proper application of the dynamo of living power, he has learned the mystery of his Craft. The seething energies of Lucifer are in his hands and before he may step onward and upward, he must prove his ability to properly handle energy.”  This is not the initiation into any level of Freemasonry or the Illuminati, but rather a quote from page 124 of Manly P. Hall’s book The Lost Keys of Freemasonry.   

            In a recording titled John Todd explains the Illuminati, that can be heard on YouTube, he says,  “When I was saved I complained….or not when…(mumbling) what am I saying, what am I saying, when I was saved?   I didn’t find this out until I was saved.   When I was in the occult, I complained at our council meeting because the 33rd council had so much power and I felt it was unjust because I had proven myself so greatly to Lucifer.” 

            In this same speech he also claims to read a passage from the Masonic book Morals and Dogma, but actually reads an alleged letter from Albert Pike to the 33rd degree inspectors generals which is not found anywhere in Morals and Dogma.  He also uses the terms “The Trilateral Council,” and the “Council of Foreign Affairs,” to refer to Illuminati organizations, when their actual names are the Trilateral Commission, not council, and the Council on Foreign Relations, not affairs.   

            Another bizarre statement that can be heard on the Internet postings of his lectures are his claims that the credit card was the mark of the Beast, and almost all license plates in Israel start with the number 666.

            He said that the Illuminati had planned to confiscate all guns within a year and a half and were going to remove the tax exempt status of churches unless they belonged to the World Council of Churches, and that all church members would have their name, address, and phone number published in post offices in their town so that everyone would know who and where all the Christians were so they could eventually be rounded up and killed.  Also, he warned that people will soon be charged with murder if they convert someone to Christianity, and that the New World Order would be created by 1980. 

            While it is still common, and a good idea to have a food supply in your home that will sustain you and your family for several weeks in case of an emergency, Todd claimed that an anti-hording act would soon be passed saying people couldn’t store more than one month’s supply of food or they will go to prison for a year.  

            One of the most blatant lies that anyone who has studied the Illuminati would see as preposterous was that Todd repeatedly said he was a member of the ultra-elite Council of 13, which is actually comprised of the 13 heads of the top 13 families of the Illuminati.  A broke nobody like John Todd, even if he were actually a member of the Illuminati, would not be anywhere close to such a prestigious level of the hierarchy.  Such positions are filled by wealthy titans like the Rockefellers and Rothschilds.  

            In the 1970s when Todd was giving his speeches, not only was little known about the Illuminati to the public, but there was no Internet for anyone to use to investigate his claims, so since some of what he was saying sounded plausible to his audience, a thorough examination of his claims would prove extremely difficult during that time period.  

            Jack Chick, one of the most published comic book artists in the world ended up creating a comic book called The Broken Cross which was based on Todd’s allegations, and in 1980 Jacob Sailor also published a comic book based on Todd’s supposed knowledge of the Illuminati.  Chick had publicly defended Todd as others began to question his truthfulness. 

            A Christian Identity group called The Covenant, The Sword, and the Arm of the Lord (CSA) published a book titled Witchcraft and the Illuminati which used some of Todd’s claims as evidence of the Illuminati.  The book also incorporated and supported the serpent seed theory and attacked Jews and African Americans as being spawn of Satan. 

            In 1973 allegations were being made that John Todd had sex with two teenage girls he met while working at a coffeehouse, carried a .38 handgun into church meetings, and was using drugs.[1]  After he and his claims came under more fire, some Christian leaders who once promoted him started to distance themselves or outright denounced him. 

            While not actually being a member of the Illuminati, apparently Todd was involved with Wicca, and in 1976 he temporarily held a charter of Watchers Church of Wicca, but after it was discovered that he had been charged with having oral sex with a minor in Dayton, Ohio, Gavin Frost revoked the charter he had granted to Todd’s coven of Frost’s Church and School of Wicca.[2] 

            In 1979 Todd was arrested and later convicted for statutory rape and transporting a minor across a state line.  Of course, he claimed he was innocent and set up by the Illuminati as payback for him exposing them, and that they used the charges as a way to silence him.

            Several Christian ministries investigated Todd’s claims of his background and discovered gaping discrepancies and fantastic lies.  The magazines Christianity Today, and Cornerstone did their own investigations and published articles exposing him.[3]

            John Todd often spoke with such conviction that he was able to fool a fair amount of people into believing him.  His charisma overshadowed his claims, some of which even in the 70s should have seemed ridiculous to his audience.  By reading some of the comments on YouTube videos featuring audio of Todd’s speeches, it sadly shows that still today some gullible listeners believe his story to be true. 

            In closing this analysis of John Todd, I will add several more preposterous claims to his long list of lies, just in case anyone still thinks he was telling the truth about being a former member of the Illuminati.  For example he claimed that the highest degree in Freemasonry was the 35th degree, when in fact it is the 33rd degree.  He said that the entire cast of the film Star Wars, which had just been released at the time, were all witches and that one million people joined witchcraft as a result of the film.  He said he knew this because he was friends with the “head of publicity” for the film.  Also, “the entire cast” of the popular soap operas at the time, The Young and the Restless, and All My Children, were witches.  He told his audience that the Illuminati bought Smith and Wesson and purposefully made the guns poor quality so they would “blow up in your face” because they didn’t want the people to be armed.  Aside from saying that both the secular and Christian music industries were controlled by Satan, he said that before an album was mass produced, that a group of 13 witches would cast a spell on the master copy and that all copies made from it would be possessed with demons.

(Excerpt from The Illuminati: Facts & Fiction by Mark Dice - Available on, Kindle and Nook)

[1] Christianity Today February 2,1979 The Legend(s) of John Todd

[2] Ibid

[3] Cornerstone Magazine The John Todd Story by Gary Metz [Issue 48]

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