Published March 14, 2013
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Authorities in Florida say three men are at the center of a scandal involving a purported veterans charity that law enforcement officials allege was a $300 million front for illegal gambling.
Officials have identified Jacksonville lawyer Kelly Mathis as the mastermind of the alleged racketeering scheme, which led to charges this week against nearly 60 people. Two other men, Johnny E. Duncan and Jerry Bass, were called "co-conspirators" of the operation.
Authorities allege that Mathis made about $6 million from the operation. They say the organization's executives gave precious little to veterans and lavished millions on themselves, spending it on boats, real estate and Maseratis, Ferraris and Porsches.
A woman who answered the phone at Mathis' law firm said no one was available to talk about his arrest.