He may look like the actor playing a doctor in a Cialis commercial but Trump sycophant and lawyer Jay Sekulow also runs a Christian charity that seems to be acting more like a Donald Trump scam than a charity. The Guardian reports that it has obtained documents that show Sekulow’s charity used donations they were squeezing out of people who were suffering the economic collapse of 2008-2009, to pay himself and his family tens of millions of dollars.
In addition to using tens of millions of dollars in donations to pay Sekulow, his wife, his sons, his brother, his sister-in-law, his niece and nephew and their firms, Case has also been used to provide a series of unusual loans and property deals to the Sekulow family.
Attorneys and other experts specialising in nonprofit law said the Sekulows risked violating a federal law against nonprofits paying excessive benefits to the people responsible for running them. Sekulow declined to detail how he ensured the payments were reasonable.
This money came from people dealing with serious financial hardships, and Sekulow knew this and the company trying to get these funds had a cheat sheet on how to best
scam extract money from people with very little of it.
Telemarketers for the nonprofit, Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism (Case), were instructed in contracts signed by Sekulow to urge people who pleaded poverty or said they were out of work to dig deep for a “sacrificial gift”.
“I can certainly understand how that would make it difficult for you to share a gift like that right now,” they told retirees who said they were on fixed incomes and had “no extra money” – before asking if they could spare “even $20 within the next three weeks”.
The Guardian is able to show, that people like the Seuklow family, need to be well paid when doing God’s work.
Sekulow also personally received other compensation totalling $3.3m. Pam Sekulow, his wife, has been paid more than $1.2m in compensation for serving as treasurer and secretary of Case.
Sekulow’s brother, Gary, the chief operating officer of the nonprofits, has been paid $9.2m in salary and benefits by them since 2000. Gary Sekulow has stated in Internal Revenue Service (IRS) filings that he works 40 hours per week – the equivalent of a full-time job – for each of the nonprofits. Filers are told to specify if any of the hours were spent on work for “related organizations”. He does not.
I feel like I remember some important religious figure once saying something in some important book about turning places of worship into “a den of thieves?” Maybe I just read that in some liberal “fake news” rag.
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.