The Daily Beast reports:
The Department of Justice on Thursday brought federal criminal charges against two Arizona men accused of using fake political groups to defraud thousands of unwitting donors out of millions of dollars.
Such groups are generally referred to as “scam PACs.” And DOJ’s criminal prosecution represents a major legal escalation against the practice by which those PACs’ executives raise huge sums of money by promising to support political candidates or causes and simply pocket the money instead.
According to DOJ, the two Arizona men, Robert and William Tierney, operated at least nine political action committees. They raised money through telemarketing campaigns promising that donations would fund the campaigns of various political candidates, pro-life activism efforts, and autism awareness.
A criminal complaint filed Thursday said “tens of thousands” of donors to nine PACs were defrauded by promises that their money would be used for “coast to coast” voter education and political campaigns that would “invest every penny…in the big races to come.”
The PACs included Grassroots Awareness PAC, Americans for Law Enforcement PAC, National Campaign PAC, Voter Education PAC, Action Coalition PAC, Protect Our Future PAC, Life and Liberty PAC, Republican Majority PAC, and RightMarch.com PAC.
The brothers raked in $50M with their scam.