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Claim: CAIR Is Getting Away With a 'Money Laundering' Scheme Under the Nose of the IRS

"Thinly disguised money laundering operation."

Over the weekend, the Daily Caller released a report claiming the Council on Islamic Relations (CAIR) has established a system whereby it essentially considers itself both a 501(c)(3) and a 501(c)(4), depending on what is most profitable at the time.

In doing so, the DC writes, CAIR "conceals donations from overseas through a series of shell organizations, according to documents from court actions involving the Muslim advocacy group."

Nihad Awad, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, speaks on March 9, 2011, at the National Press Club in Washington DC. (Photo: AFP/Getty Images)

Most Americans only know CAIR as a solitary organization, but apparently there's far more to it when it comes time to report to the Internal Revenue Service.

"As a registered lobbying group, CAIR is required to report to the IRS contributions over $5,000. Its shifting 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) branches, however, make it possible to collect millions of dollars from oil-rich Muslim nations without disclosure. Documents show CAIR has received millions of dollars in overseas contributions and tens of millions in pledges from overseas," The Daily Caller writes.  "CAIR’s convoluted structure and funding machinations are dizzying. Today, the original Council on American Islamic Relations doesn’t exist at all. In June 2013, CAIR changed its name to the nondescriptly named Washington Trust Foundation, Inc. (WTF)."

Based on the documents to which the Daily Caller links, it seems as though the Council on American-Islamic Relations Action Network, Inc. changed its name to the Washington Trust Foundation, Inc., or "WTF" for short:

Certificate of the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs Corporations Division (Photo via the Daily Caller)

The Daily Caller continues:

The original 1994 CAIR (now CAIR-Action Network) maintained only one website, which listed itself as a 501(c)(3) at the bottom of page. It made no distinction between its lobbying and non-profit arms. In this way, it was able to solicit funds both transparently and non-transparently.

Under IRS regulations, an organization may have 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) related entities, but it must maintain a wall between the two. This is accomplished by establishing separate bank accounts, board of directors, bookkeeping, and payroll. CAIR, though, had none of these.

International donors, like the government of Qatar, have made donations to “CAIR.” CAIR deposits such donations into whatever bank account it chooses: its own non-reporting lobbying account or CAIR Foundation’s 501(c)(3) charitable tax deductible bank account. CAIR can then move the money to CAIR Foundation with no reporting requirements.

“Plentiful legal evidence, acquired in the course of a lawsuit—plus CAIR’s own official filing documents to the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) and IRS—make clear that CAIR has engaged in a thinly-disguised money laundering operation,” David Reaboi, vice president for strategic communications at the Center for Security Policy, told The DC.

“In addition to violating its 501(c)(3) regulations, CAIR’s undisclosed and hidden foreign donations amount to violation of the Foreign Agent Registration Act as well,” he reportedly continued.

TheBlaze reached out to CAIR's national communications director Ibrahim Hooper, but did not receive an immediate response.

Read the entire report at The Daily Caller.

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