WSJ: IRS Opens Criminal Probe Into NRA Honcho Wayne LaPierre

ATLANTA, GA - APRIL 28:  Wayne LaPierre,  executive vice president and CEO of the NRA, speaks at the NRA-ILA's Leadership Forum at the 146th NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits on April 28, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. The convention is the largest annual gathering for the NRA's more than 5 million members.  (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - APRIL 28: Wayne LaPierre, executive vice president and CEO of the NRA, speaks at the NRA-ILA's Leadership Forum at the 146th NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits on April 28, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. T... ATLANTA, GA - APRIL 28: Wayne LaPierre, executive vice president and CEO of the NRA, speaks at the NRA-ILA's Leadership Forum at the 146th NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits on April 28, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. The convention is the largest annual gathering for the NRA's more than 5 million members. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images) MORE LESS

The Internal Revenue Service is conducting an investigation around allegations of criminal tax fraud in longtime NRA leader Wayne LaPierre’s personal tax returns, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.

The scope of the investigation is unclear. It comes after New York Attorney General Letitia James sued the gun group in August, seeking its dissolution over allegations of massive self-dealing. James at the time said she had referred the question of whether LaPierre evaded taxes to the IRS.

In that lawsuit, James singled out LaPierre and other top NRA executives for allegedly using the non-profit as their personal piggy bank. LaPierre, for example, allegedly billed the NRA for lavish expenses including taxidermy services for animals killed on big game hunting trips, while his wife would allegedly run expenses for her personal private jet travel through the gun group.

The question for James and other investigators would likely be whether indulgences that LaPierre received from the NRA qualified as some sort of taxable income, and whether the personal tax returns that are the reported subject of the IRS’s investigation were accurate.

The NRA paid LaPierre $2.2 million in 2018, the non-profit’s regulatory filings show.

Read the story here.

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

Sincerely,
TPM Staff
Latest Muckraker
Comments
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Reporters:
Newswriters:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: