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New York attorney general files lawsuit to dissolve the National Rifle Association

(CNN)New York Attorney General Letitia James announced she will attempt to dissolve the National Rifle Association, accusing its senior leadership of violating laws governing non-profit groups, using millions from the organization's reserves for personal use and tax fraud.

In a news release Thursday morning, James, a Democrat, alleged that current and former NRA leadership "instituted a culture of self-dealing mismanagement" benefiting themselves, family, friends and favored vendors, leading the organization to lose more than $63 million in three years.

"The NRA's influence has been so powerful that the organization went unchecked for decades while top executives funneled millions into their own pockets," James said, adding that her office would be forwarding the complaint to the IRS.

The suit, filed in New York Supreme Court, names NRA executives including CEO and Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre, General Counsel and Secretary John Frazer, former Chief Financial Officer Wilson "Woody" Phillips and former Chief of Staff and Executive Director of General Operations Josh Powell. James' office stated that while the NRA has headquarters in the Northern Virginia suburbs outside Washington, DC, the organization has operated as a New York-registered 501(c)(4) group since 1871.

The NRA and the NRA Foundation, a separate entity, were also sued Thursday in a separate case by Washington, DC, Attorney General Karl Racine, who alleges the foundation's board allowed the NRA to raid the foundation's reserves in order to address the NRA's cash flow problems, and fund the lavish expenses of its leadership.



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