Wyclef Jean Uses Charity to Get Paid

‚ÄčAll over Facebook, Twitter, television newscasts, and radio broadcasts, reporters and ordinary folks have been encouraging relatives, friends and anyone who cares to donate $5 to the Yele Haiti Earthquake fund, the humanitarian relief effort spearheaded by the non-profit organization founded by Haitian-American entertainer and part-time Miami resident Wyclef Jean.

According to media reports, Yele is on pace to collect more than $1 million a day. Well, South Floridians should know that the Refugee All-Star has profited from Yele.

Yesterday, The Smoking Gun posted Yele's tax returns for 2005, 2006, and 2007 which show the foundation paid $31,200 in rent to a recording studio owned by Jean and a Yele board member, who together "own a controlling interest" in a company that was paid $250,000 by the foundation for "pre-purchased...TV airtime and production services." In 2006, Yele paid it's founder $100,000, which the tax return stated was below market value, for a musical performance at a benefit concert.

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