The National Rifle Association (NRA) is in complete disarray, deeply in debt and laying off workers left and right as it tries to survive as an entity.
And, thanks to court documents obtained by Salon, we know that Wayne LaPierre, the NRA’s executive vice president and CEO, is worried that he may be “going to jail” as a result of actions he and others have taken to keep the NRA afloat:
“The documents, which were published in full on NRA Watch, a new database launched by the advocacy group Everytown for Gun Safety, allege that LaPierre has grown ‘preoccupied with going to jail.’ Ackerman’s allegations paint a picture of an executive who ‘didn’t trust his own accounting department’ and instructed associates not to disclose important information to the group’s auditors.”
Additionally, the court documents show that the NRA was actively searching for a “personal mansion” for LaPierre who is also suspected of violating the bylaws of the pro-gun organization using a go-between to pay hush money to its former president, Lt. Col. Oliver North, who left the NRA after what was later described as a “failed coup attempt.”
Also in jeopardy is the NRA’s tax-exempt status, which is being challenged in both New York and Washington, D.C. The two have:
“Launched investigations questioning the group’s tax status. New York Attorney General Letitia James is investigating whether the group violated the state’s charities law, which some legal experts and NRA insiders believe could result in a criminal referral related to LaPierre’s ‘use of nonprofit funds for personal expenses,’ according to the New York Times.”
But it’s the suggestion that even LaPierre is fearful of prosecution that has raised eyebrows, with the new documents noting that “[s]ometime in early 2018, LaPierre became preoccupied with going to jail.”
People don’t usually fear jail time unless they know they’ve done something illegal. So why exactly might LaPierre be trying to avoid a prison sentence, if, as he and the NRA maintain, nothing improper has been done by him or the group?
The biggest threat to the NRA, however, may well be its fading financial picture:
“According to a secret recording obtained by NPR, LaPierre recently told members that the NRA took a ‘$100 million hit’ over the past two years and had to cut ‘about $80 million’ from the budget and ‘took it down to the studs.’
“‘We’re not out of the woods yet,’ he warned in the recording. ‘We still gotta wrestle with this financial situation.'”
What exactly happened to the money? Could the answer be why LaPierre fears being incarcerated?
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