MO attorney general sues 4 cancer charities for allegedly defrau - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

MO attorney general sues 4 cancer charities for allegedly defrauding millions of dollars

(Source: AP Images) (Source: AP Images)
(KFVS) -

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster has joined 49 other state attorneys and the Federal Trade Commission in filing a lawsuit against four alleged cancer charities and their operators.

According to Koster, these charities allegedly received more than $187 million by "scamming" consumers throughout the country, including getting at least $3 million from Missourians.

The states and FTC allege the charities represented themselves as legitimate charities that provide direct support to cancer patients, children with cancer and breast cancer patients in the United States. Allegedly, more than 90 percent of consumers' contributions benefited only the operators, their families and friends and professional fundraisers.

The charities in question include:

  • Cancer Fund of America, Inc. and Cancer Support Services, Inc., and the corporations' president, James Reynolds, Sr. and chief financial officer, Kyle Effler
  • Children's Cancer Fund of America, Inc., and its president and executive director, Rose Perkins
  • Breast Cancer Society, Inc., and its executive director and former president, James Reynolds II

The complaint alleges the corporate defendants hired family members and friends, whether qualified or not, and used the organizations to provide them with steady, lucrative employment.

The defendants also allegedly spent donated money on personal items including cruises, jet ski outings, concert tickets and dating site memberships.

Koster said the nationwide group has already reached settlement agreements with two of the corporate defendants.

Children's Cancer Fund of America and Breast Cancer Society agreed to judgements representing the amounts consumers donated to them between 2008 and 2012: $30,079,821 and $65,564,360 respectively.

Both corporations will be liquidated by a receiver with proceeds used to satisfy the judgements.

Subject to court approval, Breast Cancer Society's Hope Supply Warehouse program may be spun off by the receiver to a legitimate, qualified charity unrelated to the current individuals and their family members.

Three of the individual defendants have also reached settlement agreements. Rose Perkins, who ran Children's Cancer Fund of America, agreed to a judgment for $30,079,821, which will be suspended upon proof of inability to pay.

James Reynolds II, who controlled Breast Cancer Society, also agreed to a $65,564,360 judgment that will be suspended because of his limited ability to pay, upon payment of $75,000.

Kyle Effler, the chief financial officer of Cancer Fund of America and Cancer Support Services, agreed to entry of a $41,152,231 judgment, the amount that consumers donated to Cancer Support Services between 2008 and 2012. His judgment will be suspended following a $60,000 payment.

In addition, Kyle Effler, Rose Perkins, and James Reynolds II, will be permanently banned from fundraising, managing a charity, and overseeing any charitable assets.

The action was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona. The settlement agreements will not be final until approved by the Court. Litigation will proceed against Cancer Fund of America, Cancer Support Services, and James Reynolds, Sr.

You can click here to visit the Missouri Attorney General's website for more information and tips on giving wisely to charities.

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