Charities in spotlight after alleged breast cancer scam

Questions are being raised about the way charities spend their funds after a St. James-based breast cancer charity was accused of misusing millions of dollars

HUNTINGTON - Questions are being raised about the way charities spend their funds after a St. James-based breast cancer charity was accused of misusing millions of dollars in donation money.

Yesterday, state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a civil lawsuit against the Coalition Against Breast Cancer and its founders, saying they spent less than 4 percent of the $9 million they raised on research and health services while keeping most of the money for themselves.

The lawsuit aims to shut down the charity, but so far, no criminal charges have been filed.

Daniel Borochoff, the president of the American Institute of Philanthropy, a charity watchdog service based in Chicago, says even though the group's actions are immoral, they may not be illegal.

"It's very easy for someone to set up a charity and rip people off," Borochoff says. "As long as they do a little good, they get away with it."

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