Probe into missing NY Katrina aid

An investigation has been launched into a New York-based charity for Hurricane Katrina families that collected tens of thousands of dollars -- most of which are now unaccounted for, a lawyer for the man in charge of the funds told The Post yesterday.

Claude Stuart was on the advisory board of New Yorkers Organized to Assist Hurricane Families, or NOAH-F, and was in charge of the money collected -- at least $31,000, according to board member Candace Sandy.

As The Post reported yesterday, tax records showed only $1,392 was ever given out.

Yet board members contacted by The Post were clueless as to where the rest of the money went.

State Sen. Malcolm Smith and Rep. Gregory Meeks of Queens helped set up the charity.

Smith yesterday said it was "an outright lie" that he had anything to do with the disbursement of the money -- or even with the charity itself other than helping to set it up.

Stuart's lawyer, Stephen Drummond, said a probe is already under way.

Drummond declined to say who was conducting the probe, or to describe its scope.

A spokesman for Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said his office was not involved.

But a source noted the investigation could be handled by federal prosecutors or the IRS.

NY Post


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