An article on the prosecution of a charity using deceptive fundraising practices from the Tennessee Secretary of States’ website: https://sos.tn.gov/news/tennessee-joins-24-other-states-dissolve-deceptive-veterans-charity
Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett, Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery, III and law enforcement partners in 24 states announced a settlement with VietNow National Headquarters, Inc., an Illinois nonprofit corporation, resulting in the organization’s termination.
In March 2017, Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette alleged thousands of deceptive solicitation violations against VietNow for misrepresenting its charitable programs to donors through misleading telemarketing solicitation scripts. In its most recent financial statement, VietNow reported raising nearly $2 million nationwide; only 5 percent of funds raised went to charitable programs. Attorneys general in multiple states soon began their own investigations of VietNow, which led to the present negotiated resolution.
“I hope this will serve as a warning to organizations that attempt to prey on the giving nature of Tennesseans,” Secretary Hargett said. “I am thankful for the swift action of the states that joined forces to put a stop to this organization’s deceitful solicitations.”
The settlement resolves the allegations and investigations by appointing a receiver to dissolve VietNow. VietNow’s directors and officers have already resigned or will resign in cooperation with the participating states, and the settlement requires their cooperation in investigations of the organization’s professional fundraisers. Upon dissolution, VietNow’s remaining funds will be paid to two well-respected veterans charities, Fisher House Foundation and Operation Homefront.