Comedian Seth Rogan donated to the MN Freedom Fund. Singer John Legend and his radical wife Chrissy Teigen donated to the fund. Justin Timberlake and actor Steve Carell donated to the MN Freedom Fund—all with the intention of giving BLM protesters who were arrested during the violent riots a get out of jail free card.
Now, the MN Freedom Fund, a group that proudly boasts on their website about how they criminal bail and immigration bonds, is under fire by the very people who donated to them. Many who thought their money would be somehow helping make black lives better, may be in for a rude awakening.
Who is behind the Minnesota Freedom Fund organization?
Simon Cecil has been the face of the Minnesota Freedom Fund since its founding. Today it’s led in part by executive director Tonja Honsey, “an incarceration survivor and a community healer [who]… uses her lived experience to advocate for the change that is needed to restore our communities from the trauma of mass incarceration,” according to MFF’s website.
According to 2018 tax documents submitted to the Internal Revenue Service, MFF’s board consists of attorneys Rory Fleming and Kassius O. Benson; Minnesota Department of Health staffer Jenn Andriano; University of Minnesota Law School professor Linus Chan; Michael Friedman, executive director of the Legal Rights Center in Minneapolis; Willy Madeira, an assistant Hennepin County public defender; and Bruce Peterson, a former Hennepin County district judge now teaching law at the University of Minnesota.
According to Breitbart – The once-obscure group used to pull in a mere $110,000 a year in donations, according to public tax records. But since the death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis police custody, it has raked in more than $20 million in less than a week.
MFF’s sudden windfall raises questions about how the organization, which is led by Tonja Honsey, a George Soros acolyte who is also a convicted drug offender, is actually spending its money. Are funds being used to bail out violent Antifa members? Will some of that cash find its way into the coffers of Democrat politicians or special interests?
The group’s aggressive demands to defund the police are also garnering attention. MFF is encouraging donations to Reclaim the Block, which has called for government divestment from the Minneapolis police. Reclaim is receiving financial support from the “Squad” — Reps. Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
MFF has been suspected of harboring Antifa sympathies through its close collaboration with the National Lawyers Guild, a radical leftist organization that has been called Antifa’s “unofficial legal arm.” President Donald Trump’s decision to classify Antifa as a domestic terror group could bring federal scrutiny to how MFF is using its money.
In the days since #BlackLivesMatter protests have swept the country, the MFF has become more brazen in its political rhetoric, including demands that Minnesota Gov. Tim Waltz (D) defund the police. It has also attracted support from prominent Democrat politicians — including several Joe Biden staffers.
MFF, which didn’t respond to a request for comment, is legally restricted from giving money to political campaigns due to its 501(c)(3) non-profit status.
Now, everyday people who contributed to the MFF want to know where there money is being spent and how it’s helping the black community?
This Twitter user posted a screenshot of the all-white Minnesota Freedom Fund administrators, saying:
We told y’all before stop being so quick to donate money to these “organizations” y’all didn’t listen. Stop being emotional Minnesota Freedom Fund raised 35 MILLION and only spent 200k on bail??? And y’all really surprised from a board that look like this? Shhhhhhhiiiiiddddd
We told y’all before stop being so quick to donate money to these “organizations” y’all didn’t listen. Stop being emotional
Minnesota Freedom Fund raised 35 MILLION and only spent 200k on bail???
And y’all really surprised from a board that look like this? Shhhhhhhiiiiiddddd pic.twitter.com/x0wuJYJsnE
— 🇧🇧 Founding Titian 🏁 (@_Lawbytheway) June 16, 2020
35 million was raised in donations from people who are unemployed, who only received a one-time payment of $1200, who work regular-ass jobs…. only $200K was actually used towards bail. white people keep taking advantage of us but y’all wanna act like y’all don’t see it… ok.
This person called their $200,000 contribution to the BLM protesters after receiving $35 million from “unemployed” people during a pandemic, a “slap in the face,” adding, “This is disgusting.”@MNFreedomFund 35 million in donations and only spending $200K bailing a few people out is a slap in the face to every person unemployed during a pandemic who gave what money they had because they thought it was going to a good cause. This is disgusting.
The MN Freedom Fund reacted to the Twitter mob asking for transparency by offering a half-baked response to their legitimate questions: Without jeopardizing the safety of the folks we bailed out we paid well over $200k in the weeks since the uprising alone. We are working on doing more.