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Four arrested in Indiana for the running of fake-Wounded Warrior fundraisers, pocketing money

Four Indiana residents were accused of performing fake “Wounded Warrior” fundraisers.

(Wounded Warrior Project)

Four people in Indiana were arrested for running fake “Wounded Warrior” fundraisers to raise money for the veterans, but instead pocketing more than $ 125,000 for himself.

The police charged James D. Linville, 44, and Joanie Watson, 38, of Clarksville, as well as Thomas A. Johnson, 42, and Amy L. Bennett, 40, both of Henryville, with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit mail fraud. If convicted, the four could face up to 20 years in prison, the Courier-Journal reported.

Authorities say the four suspects led others to believe that they are donating to different causes such as the Wounded Warrior Project, which “serves veterans and service members who incurred a physical or mental injury, illness, or wound, co-incident to their military service,” according to the website.

However, the donations went to the Wounded Warrior Fund Inc. and the Wounded Warrior Foundation, Inc., that were made by one of the four people, the chief Prosecutor of the V. S. Josh J. Minkler said Friday.

The fake organizations, the claimed donations would go towards the military families in Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio.

The officials said the four collected more than $ 125,000 donations from about 1,000 people and companies that believed they were giving money to the real organization. Instead, the defendants deposited the money to fraudulent checking accounts and used it to go shopping for himself, the indictment stated.

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The police said Linville also used the alias Sgt. Bob Davis, while Johnson went by Paul Bradley in the scheme.

The U.S. Secret Service and the Clark County Sheriff’s Department is investigating the scheme for three years.

“Our American veterans have dutifully served this country through many wars and deserve better than to be robbed of donations from donors,” Minkler said: “The actions of these fraudsters have eroded the trust and goodwill of people who want to contribute to a legitimate charitable organizations, including those in support of our veterans.”

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The Wounded Warrior Project, thanked law enforcement for reducing the scam.

“We are grateful to the enforcement of the law will hold those involved responsible for their actions and the damage that they have caused our nation’s bravest and their families,” the Wounded Warrior Project said in a statement. “WWP is committed to ensuring donor intentions are honored and we take this responsibility very seriously.”

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