A federal jury on Thursday convicted Patricia P. Driscoll of committing fraud and tax evasion as president of the Armed Forces Foundation, a Washington-based charity that assists veterans.
Driscoll, 40, of Ellicott City, Md., was found guilty of two federal counts each of wire fraud and of tax evasion and one District count of first-degree fraud, the office of U.S. Attorney Jessie K. Liu announced.
Prosecutors charged that Driscoll reported sham donors and donations, failed to disclose fundraising commissions she received in addition to her salary and spent foundation money on personal expenses, including her own business.
Driscoll resigned in July 2016 after 12 years at the military charity after media reports alleging mishandling of funds. In a tax filing, the foundation reported it had “become aware of suspected misappropriations” by Driscoll totaling about $600,000 from 2006 to 2014.
The foundation, which has ties to several sports entities, regularly claimed that roughly 95 percent of donations went directly to members of the military and their families, including nearly $2.3 million in 2014, according to court files.
The trial lasted five weeks, and the jury deliberated four days.
In a statement, Driscoll’s attorneys said: “The jury did not get it right — Patricia Driscoll is innocent. We are very disappointed by the verdict.” The statement, from attorney Brian W. Stolarz, added: “We will appeal. This is not the final chapter to this story.”
Driscoll was in the news in 2014 after she accused NASCAR driver Kurt Busch, her then-boyfriend, of grabbing her by the throat and slamming her head against a wall during an argument in his motor home at Dover International Speedway.
Busch stated in a hearing that Driscoll was a trained assassin who once returned from an assignment in a blood-spattered evening gown. A judge granted a protective order to Driscoll, ordering Busch to stay away from her.