CLEVELAND — The U.S. Marshals Service on Sunday said it plans to reveal the true identity of a former fugitive who went by the alias “Bobby Thompson” and is accused of stealing millions from donors in Ohio.
He was arrested in Portland in April after evading a nationwide manhunt for nearly two years.
Law enforcement said “Thompson” had been living a fictitious and fraudulent life since the early 2000’s when he allegedly founded the U.S. Navy Veterans Association, a charitable organization whose stated mission was to provide assistance to veterans and members of the U.S. Armed Forces.
According to the Marshals Service, it is estimated the USNVA received close to $100 million in nationwide donations. Authorities say little, if any, of the money actually benefited veterans or current service members.
In June of 2010, “Thompson” learned of a criminal investigation into the USNVA and fled. A short time later he was charged with unlawful flight to avoid prosecution, identity theft, fraud, and money laundering.
In November 2011, the United States Marshals in the Northern District of Ohio was called on to spearhead the apprehension of “Thompson,” who was indicted out of Cuyahoga County.
The Marshals Service tracked “Thompson” through several states to include Massachusetts, Arizona, New Mexico, Rhode Island, West Virginia, Indiana, Florida and Washington.
When he was arrested, “Thompson” was in possession of several false identification cards from Canada along with a backpack containing an undisclosed amount of cash.
“Thompson” was featured on America’s Most Wanted on two separate occasions, with the most recent being March 2011.
According to Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, Thompson stole between $1.5 million and $2 million from donors in Ohio.
The U.S. Marshals Service said additional information about “Thompson’s” identity will be released on Monday.
(Dan Jovic contributed to this report.)