The Public Charities Division of the Massachusetts Attorney General's Office has expanded its financial investigation into the greyhound adoption charity Greyhound Friends of Hopkinton. The agency originally issued a Civil Investigative Demand against Greyhound Friends, its founder Louise Coleman of Sherborn, the charity's bank, as well as third party vendor John Mottern of Sherborn, stating that "review of the requested information and the taking of testimony is necessary to determine whether charitable funds have been applied to charitable purposes or if breaches of trust have been committed in the administration of Greyhound Friends, Inc."
The investigative demand is extensive, including several years worth of records, such as:
- Financial logs and bank account records
- Board actions related to spending activities and check writing authority
- Loans to/from board members and relatives
- The use, acquisition, and disposition of the charity's Cadillac Escadale and Ford Flex
- Contracts awarded to the founder's neighbor
The court records state "whenever the Attorney General believes that charitable funds have not been or are not being applied to charitable purposes or that breaches of trust have been or are being committed in the administration of a public charity, she may investigate under G.L.c. 12 S8H(1) upon application to and approval by this Court."
The Suffolk County Superior Civil Court recently approved a supplemental Civil Investigative Demand, allowing the Attorney General to access additional bank records from Greyhound Friends. The investigative demand application stated, "based on a review of correspondence from documents already gathered from Greyhound Friends, the AGO has reason to believe that certain bank transactions warrant closer scrutiny."
Greyhound Friends Board President Stoddard Melhado told a reporter he could not comment on the investigation. However, an accountant’s report for the organization noted "the investigation could lead to potential litigation or claims. Management cannot estimate the probability or extent of any financial liability."
Meanwhile, Greyhound Friends has approached the Town of Hopkinton seeking reinstatement of the kennel license. Please join us in urging the Hopkinton Selectmen to say no to reinstating the kennel license.