From USA Today:
The National Children’s Leukemia Foundation’s Facebook page described the Brooklyn, N.Y. organization as one of the leading groups “in the battle against leukemia and cancer in children and adults.”
The NCLF website said the organization’s “Make a Dream Come True” program “fulfills the wishes of young cancer patients, arranging family trips, tours, introductions to celebrities and other requests.”
Other material boasted that the organization had a “computerized database registry of potential bone marrow donors throughout the world.”
The claims weren’t true, the New York Attorney General’s office alleged in a newly-filed court petition that seeks to close the organization and recover funds raised through fraudulent representations.
“Less than 1% — $57,541 — went to direct assistance for leukemia patients”
Roughly 83% of the nearly $10 million the NCLF received from donors across the nation from 2009-2013 was paid to professional fundraisers. Less than 1% — $57,541 — went to direct assistance for leukemia patients, according to the petition filed late Monday in Brooklyn’s Kings County Supreme Court.
The organization paid nearly $600,000 in salary plus $612,844 in deferred-compensation awards and a more than $100,000 pension to Zvi Shor. He was identified by Schneiderman’s office as the NCLF founder who largely ran the purported charity from the basement of his Brooklyn home.
Shor, 64, had been the long-time president of the organization, but “nominally resigned” that post in 2010 “after he was questioned about his 1999 felony conviction for bank fraud,” the court petition stated.
The NCLF also transferred $655,000 to a shell organization in Israel run by Shor’s sister, allegedly for research purposes.
“Nothing is more shameful than pocketing millions of dollars donated by good-hearted people who just wanted to help children afflicted with a terminal illness,” said New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.