George Santos allegedly stole $3K in donations for veteran’s dying service canine: report


Disgraced Rep. George Santos allegedly conned a disabled, homeless veteran out of 1000’s of {{dollars}} donated to save lots of numerous the particular person’s dying service canine, in accordance with a stomach-turning report.

The alleged account gives to Santos’ rising guidelines of shady conduct — from a largely strong resume to fabricated Jewish heritage — which has entangled the freshman congressman since he was elected to suggest components of Long Island and Queens.

The veteran, Richard Osthoff, suggested the native data web site Patch that he met Santos, who launched himself as Anthony Devolder, all through a difficult time in his life in May 2016.

Osthoff, who was honorably discharged from the Navy in 2002, was dwelling in a tent on the side of Route 9 in Howell, New Jersey alongside along with his beloved service canine Sapphire on the time, Patch reported.

Sapphire was affected by a life-threatening stomach tumor that was rising by the day and surgical process to remove the tumor would value $3,000, in accordance with the vet’s estimate, Osthoff said.

The veteran, who couldn’t afford the surgical process, said a veterinary technician took him aside and offered assist by the use of a pet charity often known as Friends of Pets United run by Anthony Devolder, an alias utilized by Santos beforehand.

Richard Osthoff's Facebook post promoting a fundraiser for his dog
Richard Osthoff promoted the GoFundMe on Facebook in 2016.
Facebook/Richard Osthoff

Devolder organize a GoFundMe to raise funds for Sapphire and as quickly because it hit its goal of $3,000, he closed and deleted the fundraising internet web page and have turn out to be onerous to succeed in sooner than he disappeared altogether, Osthoff suggested Patch.

The Navy vet, now 47, certainly not observed a penny of the donations and his beloved service canine died on Jan. 15, 2017, in accordance with the outlet.

“Little girl never left my side in 10 years,” Osthoff suggested Patch. “I went through two bouts of seriously considering suicide, but thinking about leaving her without me saved my life. I loved that dog so much, I inhaled her last breaths when I had her euthanized.”

Richard Osthoff's Facebook post promoting a fundraiser for his dog
Fundraising for Sapphire achieved its goal in June 2016.
Facebook/Richard Osthoff

His account was corroborated by fellow veteran and retired New Jersey police Sgt. Michael Boll, who suggested Patch when he heard what occurred, he tried to help Osthoff by reaching out to Santos.

“I contacted [Santos] and told him ‘You’re messing with a veteran,’ and that he needed to give back the money or use it to get Osthoff another dog,” Boll said. “He was totally uncooperative on the phone.”

Osthoff said Santos requested he take Sapphire to a Queens veterinarian as an alternative of the New Jersey apply on account of he had “credit” with the apply throughout the Big Apple.

Richard Osthoff and his dog
Sapphire died on Jan. 15, 2017 after battling a stomach tumor.
Facebook/Richard Osthoff

The vet tech who suggested Osthoff about Santos’ charity drove the pair to the Queens apply, the place a vet said Sapphire’s tumor was inoperable.

Santos claimed that he as an alternative donated the $3,000 to totally different canines in need on account of Sapphire wasn’t a candidate for surgical process and Osthoff didn’t do points his means, in accordance with a textual content material change thought-about by Patch.

After that, Osthoff was certainly not able to attain Santos as soon as extra.

There aren’t any official knowledge of Santos’ animal charity “Friends of Pets United” being registered as a tax-exempt group or charity, in accordance with the New York Times.

Another woman suggested the paper that she was scammed by the animal rescue group as successfully.

She was imagined to be the beneficiary of a 2017 fundraising event via which Santos charged $50 per explicit particular person, nonetheless certainly not acquired any of the funds. She suggested the Times that Santos offered excuse after excuse when requested in regards to the funding.

Santos and his authorized skilled didn’t reply to requests for comment from Patch.

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