MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison has banned a veterans’ charity from seeking donations in the state.
The former directors of the Florida-based nonprofit Healing Heroes Network, Inc. — Allan Spiegel, Neal Spiegel and Stacey Spiegel — are being required to pay $95,000 to the state as part of a settlement filed Tuesday. The Spiegels are also barred for five years from running any charities are soliciting charitable contributions.
Ellison’s office says Healing Heroes Network solicited about $56,000 from Minnesotans between 2015 and 2017, and despite claiming that 100% of their proceeds went to wounded veterans, very little actually did.
The money the Spiegels are required to pay will go to a reputable veteran’s charity.
“It’s appalling that a supposed charity would use wounded veterans to exploit Minnesotans’ generosity,” Ellison said. “We all owe a debt of gratitude to our veterans. As Attorney General, I will continue to aggressively pursue any organization that deceptively uses veterans to persuade Minnesotans to donate their hard-earned dollars to illegitimate causes.”
The investigation and subsequent settlement was a joint effort between Ellison’s office and the attorney’s generals from California, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Missouri, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon, Virginia and Washington.
Ellison’s office warns Minnesotans that they should do their homework on a charity first before donating, and to be suspicious of high-pressure tactics from those seeking donations.
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