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May 8th, 2012
11:23 PM ET

Charity's money not going to helping vets

A national charity that vows to help disabled veterans and their families has spent tens of millions on marketing services, all the while doling out massive amounts of candy, hand sanitizer bottles and many other unnecessary items to veteran aid groups, according to a CNN investigation.

The Disabled Veterans National Foundation, based in Washington, D.C., and founded in 2007, received about $55.9 million in donations since it began operations in 2007, according to publicly available IRS 990 forms.

Yet according to the DVNF's tax filings with the IRS, almost none of that money has wound up in the hands of American veterans.

Instead, the charity made significant payments to Quadriga Art LLC, which owns two direct-mail fundraising companies hired by the DNVF to help garner donations, according to publicly available IRS 990 forms.

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soundoff (12 Responses)
  1. Mike Stockton

    I'm a vet and I am outraged over this organizations failure to account for the money. Someone is lining their pockets and it's the same as stealing from people! What nerve.

    May 17, 2012 at 1:17 am |
  2. Albert Jacobs

    About this charity for veterans, if you guys can't get the real information about how they use the money raised how can us ordinary people get real information about other charities?? Perhaps some good websites would be very helpful. I tried Google with not much help.

    May 16, 2012 at 8:29 pm |
  3. Johna Davis

    Anderson these criminals must be held accountable for their dispicable crime my son is a 25 yr old Combat Vet who suffers from PTSD and there is not enough being done to help them with that either so this just adds to the list of injustices being done to the men and women who need our help, who deserve our help. Please keep this story alive and let us know it turns out, Thank You

    May 11, 2012 at 7:54 pm |
  4. Genold

    Keep a focus on these people Anderson. Those who take advantage of charitable people who only wish to help Veterans are the worst sort of predators.

    May 10, 2012 at 12:43 pm |
  5. BigRed

    Keep the story alive Anderson. Don't let it fade. Parasites like these people make it very difficult for legitimate service organizations to stay funded.

    May 10, 2012 at 12:41 pm |
  6. Ira T

    As a recipient of the Combat Medic Badge and Combat Action Badge award through OEF, this group makes me quite angry. As with ANY questionable or relatively unknown charitable group, one should always check them out via CharityNavigator.org or Google their name to see what comes up or what their ratings are.

    For the CFC, I donated to the Red Cross, MWR, and VFW, as I knew first hand where and what the money would be going towards. I would encourage all people to do the same... know where your money goes and do your research BEFORE you donate. You'll thank yourself in the end.

    May 10, 2012 at 10:12 am |
  7. Carolyn Lawrence

    Anderson,

    This organization is registered as a 501c3 tax exempt organization and as such must file federal returns which should be available online. You could notify the IRS if you believe they are not spending their income correctly. Is your reporter really doing an investigation or an entertainment feature? I found their tax letter with their number unless than five minutes on the internet?

    May 9, 2012 at 10:52 pm |
    • William

      I have tried to look at their Form 990, which would show income and expenses, but nothing happens on their website when I click the link. It appears they have taken these required documents off of the site.

      May 23, 2012 at 10:35 pm |
  8. Lanfear

    ^wow, they even turned the email off? What a POS. I'm not even American, but this makes me incredibly angry. not just because someone stole from others, but a charity that rips off vets? That's pretty much about as LOW as you can go. I really wonder how that woman sleeps at night. hopefully she can't anymore now that this is out in the open.

    May 9, 2012 at 9:11 pm |
  9. Nicole Venutolo

    Thanks for following this Anderson. I gave them a donation in 2009 and put their decal on my car... please do not give up on this case, having worked with disabled veterans for years I am so saddened by this.

    May 9, 2012 at 8:44 pm |
  10. mike

    I have been donating to this bunch for years, cant tell you how bad this makes me feel. My hope is that the IRS deals them a fatal blow.

    May 9, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
  11. Susan Preston

    Anderson after watching this segment on the Disabled National Veteran's Foundation I was truly furious. As a veteran myself and my son a combat vet I was so angry that an individual, Pricilla Wilkewitz would take almost 56 million dollars from Americans and claim to use the money to help disabled vets, what the hell do they need coconut MMs and service dress uniform shoes for, come on Pricilla. To top it off, she wouldn't even talk to anybody abot the mishandling of funds/donations. I wanted her to know and went to their site to email them and guess what Anderson, it's been turned off, you can not contact the DVNF...now doesn't that take the cake. I'm sure going to let all my Face Book friends know about Pricilla and her 56 million dollars donated by the American people for disabled Vets,

    May 8, 2012 at 11:45 pm |