Shane Warne Foundation Shuts Amidst ControversyFebruary 2, 2016 2:20 pm
Each year the Shane Warne Foundation would host various high profile poker tournaments in order to raise money for children in need, but the organization has now shut shop after coming under scrutiny by a consumer watchdog for the amount of money that it actually allocates towards its charity.
The Shane Warne Foundation started its quest to “enrich the lives of seriously ill and underprivileged children” back in 2004, and over the course of its history has channeled $3.67 million towards its chosen charity. Last year, however, the foundation failed to produce an annual statement, leading to its investigation by the Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV). Any charity that distributes less than 35% of its proceeds has to receive approval by the CAV, and the watchdog has now requested an independent audit to confirm whether the Shane Warne Foundation has been meeting its stated 29.5% annual target.
According to one investigative journalist that figure may have fallen to just 16 cents in the dollar, with allegations sugesting that the foundation may have given Shane Warne’s brother $210,000 for occupying an executive position, paid Warne’s parents money for rent, with much of the remaining funds subsequently spent on hosting gala dinners and events. As a CAV statement explained last year:
“Consumer Affairs Victoria is concerned about a number of inconsistencies in The Shane Warne Foundation’s reporting and accounting practices and is looking into this matter.”
In the meantime, Shane Warne has reacted against the negative publicity and the foundation which bears his name is due to shut shop on 18 March, with a final closing cheque issued thereafter. According to the foundation, any accusations levied agaist it have been “unwarranted speculation”, with Warne also slamming the CAV’s request for an independent audit, calling it “a disgrace and absurd”, while suggesting that the $10,000 needed to complete the audit would be better spent on providing for underprivileged children.