Kudos to the investigative reporting of BuzzFeed News’ Ken Bensinger for uncovering the activities of a non-profit founded by Big Lie purveyor Sidney Powell, yet another of Trump's “best people”:
Since October, the organization, Defending the Republic, has been making monthly payments to the defense attorney for Kelly Meggs, a member of the militant group the Oath Keepers who is charged with seditious conspiracy for his role in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. In an interview, the attorney, Jonathon Moseley, said he was aware of “at least three or four other defendants who have that arrangement” as well. The Oath Keepers’ general counsel, Kellye SoRelle, said that one of those others is the group’s founder, Stewart Rhodes. Offered the chance to deny that, his lawyers said they don’t discuss funding.
According to Bensinger, Defending the Republic had raised nearly $15 million by last August and a lot more since then, including from the sale of merchandise, such as $95 hoodies. “Yet despite mounting legal scrutiny from federal and state investigators, Defending the Republic has disclosed almost nothing about where that money has been going,” Bensinger wrote.
Putting aside the support for alleged seditionists, Powell’s non-profit seems every bit as dishonorable as her Big Lies about the 2020 election. Bensinger writes that the organization was soliciting donations in Florida a month before it was officially founded in Texas and without registering as a charity. There was a settlement in August.
That appears to be the tip of the iceberg:
In its defamation lawsuit against her, Dominion Voting A defamation lawsuit filed by Dominion Voting Systems — which Powell falsely accused of handing the election to Joe Biden — alleged that she treated Defending the Republic’s “funds as her personal funds, redirecting them to the law firm she controls and dominates” and used them to cover her own legal defense. The group’s Florida registration form, meanwhile, states that Powell receives compensation but doesn’t note how much.
And although the group claims on its website to be a 501(c)(4) organization, Internal Revenue Service records show no tax-exempt entities registered under Defending the Republic's name or taxpayer ID number.
In September, prosecutors from the Justice Department sent Defending the Republic a subpoena, requesting fundraising and accounting records, according to the Washington Post, and subsequent reports found that prosecutors are investigating whether the group filed false incorporation papers in Texas. In December, the organization reached a consent order with regulators in Mississippi for failing to register to solicit donations in that state, as reported by Miami broadcaster and columnist Grant Stern.
I highly recommend the entire article.