Tuesday, August 13, 2013

"Fraud, dishonesty, incompetence and gross mismanagement..." at this charity?

by Gary Snyder

Allegations of fraud, dishonesty, incompetence and gross mismanagement are thrown at  the charity-Women in Support of the Million Man March (WISOMMM) -by Wells Fargo Bank in court documents filed last week. 

The bank plans to foreclose on three Newark buildings controlled by powerful city activist Fredrica Bey and the nonprofit foundation she runs. The bank also accuses the charity of making fraudulent payments of more than $10,000 to Bey and her husband Rayford Scott several weeks before the group filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, according to the documents.

The buildings are the cornerstone of a real estate fiefdom controlled by Bey that has been heavily scrutinized by state and federal investigators over the past year. If the bank seizes the buildings — which the group purchased in 1998, 2001 and 2004 for a total of $4.37 million — the loss would be a devastating blow to the embattled nonprofit group and its leader.

The potential loss of its buildings is the latest setback Bey and WISOMMM have faced in recent months.

In June, state Education Department officials closed a charter school Bey founded because of its repeated failure to comply with state regulations, and a former school employee filed a federal civil suit against the school and Bey, accusing her of firing employees who threatened to expose her alleged wrongdoing.

Last week, Gambardella appointed a trustee to oversee the bankruptcy case and root out potential fraud. Among other duties, the trustee will scrutinize claims made by Bey and Scott that they are owed $1.1 million from WISOMMM as creditors. Scott previously worked as a custodian at Adelaide L. Sanford Charter School.

WISOMMM also faces a civil lawsuit brought last year by U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman, who accuses the group of misusing a $345,325 federal grant to keep "at-risk" youth off the streets and then falsely reporting how the money was spent. In a letter filed in federal court late last month, Fishman said Bey has "failed to cooperate" with federal investigators and refused to provide financial documents demanded by the government.

Last week, Wells Fargo also won the right to have a property manager oversee the buildings until the bank can begin the foreclosure process, according to court documents.

Nonprofit Imperative gathers its information principally from public documents...some of which are directly quoted. Virtually all cited are in some phase of criminal proceedings; some have not been charged, however. Cites in various media: Featured in print, broadcast, and online media outlets, including: Charity Navigator, Vermont Public Radio, Miami Herald, National Public Radio (NPR), Huffington Post, The Sun News, Atlanta Journal Constitution, Wall Street Journal (Profile, News and Photos), “Betrayal”, (a movie), NBC (on Charity Fraud…TBD), FOX2, ABC Spotlight on the News, WWJ Radio, Marie Claire, Ethics World, Aspen Philanthropy Newsletter, Harvard Business Review, Current Affairs, Charity Navigator, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, St. Petersburg Times, Board Room Insider, USA Today Topics, Accountants News, Newsweek.com, Responsive Philanthropy Magazine, New York Times, Portfolio Magazine, The Virgin Islands Daily News, NANKAI (China) BUSINESS REVIEW, National Religious Broadcasters newsletter, The Charity Governance Blog, American Chronicle, Palm Beach Post, Detroit Free Press, Oakland Press, Nonprofit World, Socially Responsible Business Forum, PNNOnline, Ohio Nonprofit Resources, Nonprofit Good Practice Guide, Nonprofit Startup Guide, Nonprofit Blog, National Coalition of Homeless Newsletter, Finance and Administration Roundtable Newsletter, MichiganNonprofit.com, CORP! Magazine, Crain’s Michigan Nonprofit, ncrp.org, PhilanTopic, Nashville Free Press, Nonprofit Law Blog, Seniors World Chronicle, Carnegie Reporter, Assoc. of Certified Fraud Examiners Examiner, msnbc.com, Worchester (MA) Telegram and Gazette, Carnegie Corporation of America, EO Tax Journal, Wikipedia: Non-profit Organizations; Parent: Wise Austin, Accountants News, Veterans Today, Answers.com, Far-roundtable, #Nonprofit Report, nonprofithelpnews, nonprofit news; National Enquirer, Northwest Herald, The HelpWise Daily, The #Nonprofit Report, Wikipedia (Nonprofit Organization), Answers.com, Nonprofits: On the Brink (2006) Silence: The Impending Threat to the Charitable Sector (2011)
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