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Ohio Jury Convicts Ex-fugitive in $100M Veterans Charity Fraud Case

FILE: Gavel, Court
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CLEVELAND (AP) — A jury in Cleveland has convicted the mysterious defendant in a $100 million, cross-country veterans charity fraud case.

The jury that issued its verdict Thursday didn’t hear from the ex-fugitive, who decided against testifying. His attorney said he wanted to tell his story but worried about his mental state if he faced aggressive cross-examination by prosecutors.

The defendant identifies himself as 67-year-old Bobby Thompson, but authorities say he’s Harvard-trained attorney John Donald Cody.

He was charged with looting the United States Navy Veterans Association, a charity he ran in Tampa, Fla. He was indicted in 2010, disappeared for nearly two years and was arrested last year in Portland, Ore.

Authorities believe he defrauded donors of up to $100 million in 41 states. A fraction of that money was found.

Sioux Falls Police Investigate Fraud Allegation

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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