The man accused of bilking about $100-million from donors while running a Florida veterans charity under an assumed name has been identified as a former military intelligence officer who has been on an FBI wanted list for a quarter-century, the Tampa Bay Times and CNN report.
Starting with a Google search for cold-case fraud fugitives, the U.S. Marshal who tracked down “Bobby Thompson” earlier this year connected the suspect with John Donald Cody, a 65-year-old Harvard-trained lawyer who disappeared in 1984. A fingerprint check confirmed the match with Mr. Cody, who was indicted in 1987 on federal fraud and espionage charges.
Since his April arrest in Oregon, Mr. Cody has been in custody in Ohio, where as Bobby Thompson he was indicted two years ago on charges stemming from his operation of the U.S. Navy Veterans Association. He established the charity in Tampa in 2002, ostensibly to support former service members and their families.
Prosecutors allege the association collected millions of dollars nationwide via telemarketing and funneled most of it into political contributions.