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The disputed NRA chief kept the bankruptcy filing secret from his agent

Wayne LaPierre, the puzzled chief executive officer of the National Rifle Association, kept his organization’s recent bankruptcy filing secret from almost every senior official, including legal counsel, chief financial officer, and chief lobbyist, on Wednesday. Said that. He also did not notify most of the NRA’s board of directors.

LaPierre commented after effectively running for trial in the Federal Bankruptcy Court in Dallas. NRA is a solvent, Apply for bankruptcy protection In January, in a bold bid to evade New York regulators, where the NRA has been chartered for a century and a half.

State Attorney General Letitia James sued the association In August, Trying to shut it down in the claims of mismanagement and corruption. She is also seeking tens of millions of dollars in mispentant funding from Lapierre and three other current or former NRA leaders.

Nonprofits have been involved in scandals for the past two years, revealing extravagant spending by the NRA and its contractors. On a Zegna suit and a luxury trip, La Pierre went to Lake Como in Italy and the Atlantis resort in the Bahamas. .. Other benefits included a charter jet for him and his family, and a yacht vacation for a contractor named Illusion and Grand Illusion.

The bankruptcy proceedings became the latest referendum on Mr. Lapierre’s 30-year tenure in the Gun Rights Group, which is trying to turn the fight against the Attorney General of New York into a fight for freedom of speech instead of freedom of speech. .. ..

“In contrast to what we believe has become a toxic, weaponized and politicized government in New York, the NRA is fair enough to thrive and grow in a fair environment. I filed for this bankruptcy to find a place for legal competition, “said Lapierre in his testimony.

The association plans to take advantage of bankruptcy to reorganize into Texas. However, the Attorney General’s office and NRA’s largest creditor, former advertising firm Ackerman McQueen, claim to be malicious and want to reject the submission. The trial, which is part of the bankruptcy proceedings, began on Monday to determine whether the case would proceed.

“In the words of the NRA itself, it’s not only a solvent, it’s also financially powerful,” said Deputy Attorney General Monica Connell. “If NRA faced an existential crisis due to bankruptcy, it was a crisis brought about by Lapierre and his enablers and their choices,” she added.

During the two years of turmoil prior to the trial, the NRA became unusually quiet, shutting down the fire-breathing media NRATV and parting from former spokeswoman Dana Loesch. It was also largely silent during the 2020 presidential election, after playing a major role in supporting the election of Donald J. Trump in 2016.

However, the organization is still a strong lobbying force, reforming the political situation surrounding guns.Its lasting impact is with Atlanta Boulder, Colorado.When we run into the reality of Republican opposition and Senate filibuster, where gun control demands are strong.

But bankruptcy is a dangerous bet for NRA and a sign of its despair. LaPierre and his outside lawyer, William A. Brewer III is a filing architect and can lose control of your organization. One possible outcome is that if the case is not completely dismissed, judge Harlin D. Hale may replace the current management team by appointing a trustee to take over the day-to-day operations of the NRA. I can do it. The use of trustees is rare in the bankruptcy of a large corporation and usually occurs only in the case of fraud, incompetence, or serious mismanagement.

NRA lawyer Gregory E. Garman opposed such results this week in court, claiming that “the trustee is actually a death sentence.”

“The debate that trustees guarantee the future of NRA confuses our purpose and role,” Garman said.

The NRA claimed that the group had used the trial to reform the group after making some minor mistakes in surveillance. “Compliance has become a way of life for the National Rifle Association,” Gurman said, admitting that there are moments in the trial that are “moderately worthy of clinging.”

But those moments undermined reform claims. Among the issues raised in the proceedings, Lapierre’s longtime assistant Millie Hello diverted $ 40,000 from NRA for her personal use, including helping her son pay for her wedding. There is something that was continued even after the proceedings. (Before she was hired by the NRA, Hello Acknowledge sin A felony related to the theft of money from an art institution she ran. )

The role of NRA’s legal counsel, John Frazier, was also scrutinized when it became clear that he had no experience in such a role and had only two years of private practice. Despite being the organization’s chief lawyer, he was exposed to the darkness of important legal decisions and was not informed in advance by Mr. Lapierre that the NRA was filing for bankruptcy. According to a former aide, Lapierre once said he wouldn’t use Fraser “for my parking breach ticket.” The thorns that Lapierre admitted in the pre-trial testimony record were “some points.”

Lapierre himself admitted that he made a mistake, such as not disclosing how to use the luxury yacht.

“I now believe it should have been disclosed,” he said.

His testimony is expected to continue on Thursday.

The disputed NRA chief kept the bankruptcy filing secret from his agent

Source link The disputed NRA chief kept the bankruptcy filing secret from his agent

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