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November 24, 2015

Okla. Man Guilty of Defrauding Alzheimer's Charity

A Sapulpa, Okla., man was found guilty Monday of defrauding a former college football coach's charity of $267,000 in connection with a contract to print booklets on Alzheimer's care, reports the Tulsa World. A jury found Kelly Verd Nichols, 47, guilty on six of 10 counts of mail fraud, money laundering, and bankruptcy fraud.

According to trial testimony, Mr. Nichols became friends in 2004 with Frank Broyles, then the athletic director at the University of Arkansas. Broyles' wife, an Alzheimer's sufferer, died that same year. A January 2015 indictment said Mr. Nichols received $267,000 from the Frank & Barbara Broyles Legacy Foundation in 2010 to reprint 500,000 copies of a booklet titled "Coach Broyles' Playbook for Alzheimer's Caregivers."

Mr. Nichols had arranged for an earlier printing of the booklets through a Chinese firm, but the additional run did not materialize. Trial witnesses said Mr. Nichols used the money for personal expenses. His attorney said he had no criminal intent but managed his business poorly. Mr. Nichols faces up to 35 years in prison and is scheduled to be sentenced in March.