by Cleveland.com/The Plain Dealer, Kent State alumnus, Jason
Cope, recently withdrew his $1 million gift to Kent State University after the
student newspaper brought to light Cope's investigation by the SEC.
Kentwire.com reported that Cope was associated with a
financial firm that defrauded 190 investors of $8.7 million in 1999/2000. In SEC v. Milan Capital Group, Inc., 2001
U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11804 (S.D.N.Y. Aug. 14, 2001) [enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers], Cope, along with several other defendants,
was found jointly and severally liable for $19 million in illicit profits and penalties.
million gift was to coincide with Kent State's unveiling of a "Cope
Court" logo on the basketball court's sidelines. The University has since cancelled
the court naming. According to the University, it was aware of the litigation at
the time Cope made the $1 million gift.
story like this have a chilling effect on university gifts? Maybe. Journalists (especially student journalists) are a hungry bunch, and in their zeal to discover, potential donors may fall prey
to the same vetting process associated with politics.
. . . .
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