Longtime NRA Leader Wayne LaPierre Resigns Ahead of Funds Misappropriation Trial

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New York Attorney General Letitia James among prosecutors alleging financial wrongdoing by NRA leadership

Wayne LaPierre, who has served in the leadership of the pro-gun National Rifle Association (NRA) group for decades, announced on Friday that he would be stepping down as the organization’s chief executive.

release issued by the NRA detailed that LaPierre “cited health reasons as a reason for his decision.” Stepping in to fill LaPierre’s post in the interim will be Andrew Arulanandam, who has served as the organization’s executive and head of general operations.

“With pride in all that we have accomplished, I am announcing my resignation from the NRA,” LaPierre said in a statement accompanying the release.

“I’ve been a card-carrying member of this organization for most of my adult life, and I will never stop supporting the NRA and its fight to defend Second Amendment freedom. My passion for our cause burns as deeply as ever.”The resignation will take effect on January 31.

During his more than 30 years with the gun rights organization, LaPierre faced various controversies, many of which emerged from the firm’s responses to repeat mass shootings across the US, efforts to enforce comprehensive gun laws, and more recently financial fallouts.

Noted in the Friday release is the upcoming embezzlement trial naming LaPierre and other members that composed senior NRA leadership. The case, which is due to go to trial on Monday, alleges that LaPierre and company diverted millions away from the NRA’s charitable mission and toward their own personal gain.

Although the NRA and LaPierre have rejected the accusations and denied any wrongdoing, prosecutors – chief among them New York Attorney General Letitia James – allege the group encouraged a “culture of self-dealing, mismanagement and negligent oversight.” Over $60 million is said to have been funneled away from the mission.

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