Marine veteran running scam charity targeting Marine families pleads guilty to wire fraudMarine Corps Times
By: Shawn Snow
April 2, 2019
From 2014–2016, Simpson raised nearly $481,000, but court documents said he pocketed $391,000 for his own “personal use and enrichment.”
Disney's Mickey and Minnie share a moment with a Marine's child during the Horton Plaza holiday celebration in San Diego, Nov. 30, 2010. A Marine veteran running a scam charity called Marines and Mickey pleaded guilty to wire fraud, according to the United States Attorney for the District of South Carolina.
Disney's Mickey and Minnie share a moment with a Marine's child during the Horton Plaza holiday celebration in San Diego, Nov. 30, 2010.John Shannon Simpson faces 20 years in prison or and/or a fine of $250,000, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office of Sherri A. Lydon, District of South Carolina.
Feds say the 43 year-old founder of the charity bilked people into donating money to help send Marines and families to Disney resorts and to cover the cost of attending boot camp graduation.
Victims of the scam included active-duty Marines, and Cathy Wells, whose son, Lance Cpl. Skip Wells, was killed in the 2015 attack on the military recruiting center in Chattanooga, Tennessee, according to a report from the Charlotte Observer.
According to court documents, Wells gave nearly $135,000 dollars to the charity, some from her son’s death benefits.
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