|June 28th, 2017||#1|
Trump lawyer and Israel first Jew of Russian origin Jay Sekulow grafts 60mil from Christian charity
A lawyer for President Trump, Jay Sekulow, used his Christian nonprofit to direct more than $60 million to himself, his family and their related businesses since 2000, according to a report.
Through his nonprofit, Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism (CASE), Sekulow, his wife and two sons, as well as his brother, niece and nephew, have all received compensation and benefits from the Christian nonprofit, according to the Guardian.
Sekulow founded CASE in 1988 and also serves as chief counsel for its sister organization, the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ).
The 61-year-old joined the legal team representing Trump in investigations into ties between his campaign associates and Russia, and has become a staunch defender of the president.
Sekulow himself has received personal compensation totaling $3.3 million since 2000, and his wife, Pam, has made more than $1.2 million serving as CASE's treasurer and secretary.
According to the organization's 2015 tax filings, Sekulow made $91,429 from CASE in 2015 and worked an average of 20 hours per week.
His wife, Pam, made $9,134 in 2015 for working five hours per week, according to CASE's 990s, but in 2001, her salary and benefits for her work as CASE's secretary and treasurer totaled $267,026.
Since 2000, Sekulow's brother, Gary, has been paid $9.2 million in salary and benefits serving as the nonprofits' chief operating officer. Sekulow's two sons, as well as Gary Sekulow's son and daughter, received at least $1.7 million in compensation for work done for the nonprofits in that same time frame.
Sekulow's nonprofits have made more than $25 million in payments for legal services to a law firm co-owned by Sekulow, the Constitutional Litigation and Advocacy Group, since 2000.
Nonprofit lawyers warned that Sekulow's situation may run afoul of federal law, which prohibit nonprofit employees from receiving "excess benefit."
But a spokesman for Sekulow, Gene Kapp, said Sekulow's entities have all been reviewed by compensation experts, public accounting firms and the IRS.
"The financial arrangements between the ACLJ, CASE and all related entities are regularly viewed by outside independent compensation experts and have been determined to be reasonable," Kapp said in a statement to the Guardian. "In addition, each entity has annual independent outside audits performed by certified public accounting firms. Further, the IRS has previously conducted audits of the ACLJ and CASE and found them to be in full compliance of all applicable tax laws."
In addition to directing money to his family members through CASE, Sekulow also approved a plan in 2009 that pushed employees working for the organization to persuade the poor or unemployed to make a "sacrificial gift" to the nonprofit, according to documents obtained by the Guardian.
In a script provided to telemarketers, CASE workers were instructed to ask prospective donors to spare some money to push back against "efforts to undermine our traditional
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