Kai Brockington formed an Austell non-profit with the mission of providing healthcare to low-income people. Between 2013 and 2017, he raised $668,000 to help low-income communities.
Not a cent of it helped anyone except the 36-year-old Brockington and his family, prosecutors found. The money went toward jewelry, family trips to Italy and fancy shoes, prosecutors said.
Brockington, of Dallas, pleaded guilty to federal charges of mail fraud and filing false tax returns during a 45-minute court hearing Wednesday, records show.
“Legitimate charities rely on the generosity of donors to carry out their humanitarian missions. Because of his audacity to seek personal benefit, Brockington’s undermined the benevolent intentions of every charity,” David J. LeValley, head of FBI Atlanta, said in a news release.
He ran his con through “Our Genesis Project,” which registered with the state in 2010.
Brockington made the money by exploiting corporate donation-matching programs. The companies would offer to match any donation by one of its employees as long as paperwork confirmed it was a legitimate charity.
The IRS deemed the non-profit tax-exempt in 2012, prosecutors wrote in charging documents.
What Brockington would do is either pay people thousands of dollars to make donations to Our Genesis Project that would then be matched by the companies or he would work at the companies himself and run the scam that way.
Prosecutors found he spent more than $25,000 on jewelry, $54,000 on trips to places like Italy and Disney World, $57,000 on restaurants and food, $116,000 on clothing and shoes. He and his family spent the rest on updates to their home, vehicles and to pay bills.
Brockington filed for bankruptcy in 2015 but didn’t disclose all the money he was making from his charity. He also falsified personal tax returns in the same way.
He bilked the IRS of $97,000, according to prosecutors.
Brockington is set to be sentenced Aug. 22.
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