Wednesday, October 10, 2012

US Navy Veterans Assoc. Scam - 'Bobby Thompson' - John Donald Cody!

The pursuit of Arizona fugitive lawyer 'Mr. X'
The tale of how U.S. marshals found a fugitive lawyer who fled Arizona in 1984

Oct. 9, 2012 - In 1984, flamboyant Sierra Vista lawyer John Donald Cody disappeared in a blue Corvette along with $100,000 from a client's trust account. Authorities say he converted the money to traveler's checks, abandoned his car at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport with keys in the ignition and boarded a plane. Cody never was seen again.

Until last week, when federal authorities say they identified Cody as the fugitive mastermind of a $100 million charity scam that purported to help U.S. Navy veterans.

Cody has been in federal custody since April, when U.S. marshals tracked him to Portland, Ore., and arrested him under the name Bobby Thompson.

But to his captors, Cody would identify himself only as "Mr. X."

"For five months, we didn't know who this guy was," said Pete Elliott, U.S. marshal for the Northern District of Ohio.

As Thompson, authorities allege Cody operated a fake Florida-based charity called the United States Navy Veterans Association, which for eight years bilked tens of millions of dollars from people across the country.

They say Cody, as Thompson, ran the charity out of a shabby office in Ybor City, where he used his credentials as a former military officer to solicit contributions that rarely went to veterans.

Despite a fake history that spanned 80 years, a fake 84-member board of directors and its failure to help any actual veterans, Thompson's charity and his financial support of Republican campaigns allowed him to circulate among the nation's top lawmakers. read more>>>

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