SACRAMENTO — A California-based charity that provides international assistance to children has settled allegations by the state of filing false reports that inflated the charity's "Gift-In-Kind" donations in order to mislead the public.
According to the California Attorney General's Office, Giving Children Hope (GCH) purposely manipulated data regarding pharmaceuticals purchased by its two subsidiaries, Giving Hope International and International Clinic Aid that were then donated to GCH. GCH said more than $34.9 million in value for the donations, which were U.S. drug prices and not the actual cost the subsidiaries purchased the drugs for from the Netherlands. The inflated donation was part of a "scheme" to get additional donors and receive a four-star ranking, the Attorney General's Office said.
“[This] settlement should serve as a stern reminder to charities that lack transparency,” California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said in a statement. “My office is committed to protecting California donors and honest charities from the harm caused by accounting gimmicks used to mislead the public."
The settlement includes GCH paying $400,000 along with the charity's directors, officers and accountant paying $10,000, according to Becerra's office.