Scammer of Navy vets convicted


A woman pleaded guilty in Ohio Wednesday of scamming millions of dollars from Navy veterans, the Roanoke Times reports.

Blanca Contreras, associated with an alleged booster group calling itself the U.S. Navy Veterans Association, pleaded guilty in Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas to corruption, theft and money laundering. She faces 25 years in jail.

Still at large is her alleged partner, Bobby Thompson, who Ohio authorities say used a false identity to raise millions, supposedly on behalf of Navy veterans.

Virginia officials say the “group” — its only presence in the state was a mail drop — raised more than $2 million in Virginia alone. Virginia and other states have launched their own criminal investigations, although Virginia’s attorney general has a conflict of interest to be resolved: Thompson donated $55,500 to the election campaign of Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli two years ago.

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