4 Cancer Charities Accused in F.T.C. Fraud Case
In soliciting donations through telemarketing calls and direct-mail, the F.T.C. complaint says, the charities described specific uses for the money they solicited, like transporting patients to and from chemotherapy or purchasing pain medication for children. “These were lies,” the complaint says, and the money went to the people running the charities for expenses like gym memberships, college tuition and dating website subscriptions. “Donations have enriched a small group of individuals.”
According to the complaint, Mr. Reynolds devised the fund-raising scheme in 1987 and recruited his son, friends and members of his church congregation to participate in the years that followed. The F.T.C.’s finding of $187 million in misspent donations reflects the charities’ activity from 2008 to 2012. In that time, the charities spent less than 3 percent of donations on cancer patients.