A new look inside his charity, Cathy’s Kids, named after his late mother, has found sloppy bookkeeping at best and possible theft and misappropriation at worst. In other words… fraud.
So this is how he keeps up with the Kardashians?
The charity was examined by ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” and claimed to have discovered that none of the $2.2 million raised by the charity has gone to its stated purpose, cancer research. But $1.3 million was used to fund “elite” youth basketball teams, which seems outside the organization’s mission.
The remaining $900,000 is unaccounted for, according to the report. Odom, contacted for comment, blew off the reporter’s questions by claiming that he’d donated all of the money. But appeals for funds from the public appear on his and wife Khloe’s personal websites.
The IRS rules for establishing and running a charity are very strict, with a major emphasis on record keeping to document how the money is being used. For example, administrative costs can’t exceed a certain percentage of proceeds. State laws also apply.
The charity, like so many other celebrity organizations, may be guilty of nothing more than sloppy bookkeeping. Still, there have been instances where celebrities use their charities like personal piggy banks.
Singer Wyclef Jean made headlines when his nonprofit organization, Yele Haiti, was discovered to have paid $105,000 to the rapper’s mistress, according to IRS records. It was supposed to be providing relief in Haiti after the earthquake.
Bristol Palin served as the spokesperson for the teen pregnancy prevention nonprofit called Candie’s Foundation, until it was revealed in 2009 that she was pulling down a $262,500 annual salary while the group only spent $35,000 on teen pregnancy clinics.
U2 rocker Bono’s charitable organization ONE only donates 1 percent of it’s annual proceeds to charitable causes. The rest of the funds are used to pay exorbitant salaries to the charities’ employees.
A smart lawyer may be able to clear up Lamar’s mess, but he’s probably facing one heck of a bill from the IRS. Can’t wait to see this on an episode of “Keeping Up With the Kardashians.”