Head of top US gun-rights advocacy group convicted of corruption

Head of top US gun-rights advocacy group convicted of corruption

Feb 25, 2024

Washington [US], February 25: A jury in New York on Friday found former top US gun lobbyist Wayne LaPierre and other executives of the influential National Rifle Association (NRA) guilty of corruption-related charges.
After a week of deliberations, the jury found that LaPierre abused his position for his personal benefit and steered lucrative contracts to friends and relatives, including spending millions of organization dollars on lavish travel, private planes, expensive clothing, New York Attorney General Letitia James said in a Friday statement.
He was found to have caused the NRA some $5.4mn in damages and ordered to pay $4.35mn. He has reportedly already repaid part of the money.
A jury also found that former treasurer and chief financial officer Wilson "Woody" Phillips and current general counsel and corporate secretary John Frazer were liable for failing to uphold their duties as executives of a not-for-profit corporation. Phillips was ordered to pay $2mn in damages. Frazer and the NRA were also found liable for making false statements on the NRA's regulatory filings.
The jury also determined that James showed cause for removal of LaPierre from the NRA based on his violations.
"LaPierre and senior leaders at the NRA blatantly abused their positions and broke the law. But today, after years of rampant corruption and self-dealing, Wayne LaPierre and the NRA are finally being held accountable," James said.
The NRA has non-profit status in the US and is therefore subject to special requirements. It is regarded as an extremely conservative organization with political influence that goes beyond just advocating for the right to bear arms.
The 74-year-old LaPierre had headed the NRA since 1991, but had announced shortly before the start of the trial in New York in January that he would be stepping down for health reasons.
Source: Qatar Tribune