Curious about its donations to local political figures, reporter Jeff Testerman and researcher John Martin began trying to unravel the mystery behind the Navy Veterans charity. In a six-month investigation, the Times could find only one officer in the entire organization, and the nonprofit declined to reveal where its millions of dollars of income went. Its headquarters: a dilapidated duplex in Ybor City.
IRS-approved charities are not supposed to show partisanship nor endorse politicians. Yet Bobby Thompson, the head of Navy Veterans Association, raised thousands of dollars through a political action commmittee associated with Navy Veterans, all the while hobnobbing with politicans from George W. Bush to Charlie Crist to Pam Iorio.
Karmika V. Rubin, former executive assistant and special counsel to Bobby Thompson and the U.S. Navy Veterans Association, has been suspended from practicing law in Florida.
Ohio's case against Bobby Thompson came to a close Monday with a judge in Cleveland handing a 28-year sentence to the man convicted of running a nationwide charity scam from an Ybor City duplex.
CLEVELAND — He claimed to be a retired Naval commander and raised more than $100 million from generous Americans for his charity in Tampa.
CLEVELAND — It took the jury only three hours to decide Bobby Thompson's fate.
CLEVELAND — The first week of the trial of Bobby Thompson elicited plenty of damaging testimony about the founder of the Tampa charity known as the U.S. Navy Veterans Association.
CLEVELAND — A former telemarketer for U.S. Navy Veterans Association testified Wednesday that the man who ran the Tampa charity put unusual conditions on fundraising in some states.
CLEVELAND — Bobby Thompson was a "Machiavellian genius" who drank four Bloody Marys at a business breakfast, dressed like a homeless man and claimed he was funded through a "black box" budget at the CIA.
CLEVELAND — In hindsight, maybe Bobby Thompson's lawyer should have seen the red flags.
The man known as Bobby Thompson goes on trial in state court in Cleveland today.
COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio attorney general's multi-state case against a man accused of fraud after collecting as much as $100 million in the name of Navy veterans doesn't address the man's donations to a who's who of mostly Republican politicians, including the attorney general himself.