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March 21, 2010; St. Petersburg Times| According to the St. Petersburg Times, the U.S. Navy Veteran’s Association is likely a multi-million dollar scam. The Times searched for the organization’s CEO Jack L. Nimitz for six months but could not locate him or more than 80 other executives and state officers whose names appear on tax forms filed with the IRS. “The newspaper searched directories and online public records databases, including property records, court records and voter registration records.” The auditors listed as having done their audits are similarly in the wind.

According to the Times the organization raised more than $22 million in 2008 but their spending and all responsible parties have been hard to pin down.

The organization told the Times it spent “1 percent to needy beneficiaries and said the other 99 percent went for administrative costs, educational materials and ‘direct assistance’ to veterans and their families” but it has resisted providing any specifics even about specifics or even where its records are kept. Today’s story is the first in a two part series but even so it is far too complex to do justice to here but among the many interesting details is an incident at an ATM involving a Director of the organization, a number of instances of questionable claims of military service, an association with 2 telemarketing fundraising firms charged with deceptive practices, and many post office boxes.

This would all be laughable if it did not involve fraud in the names of military veterans.—Ruth McCambridge