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Candy from children – Charity charged with violations

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Illinois Attorney General Jim Ryan has filed a lawsuit alleging that a nonprofit group violated child labor laws with its door-to-door candy-selling scheme.

The suit also alleges that Successful Teens, a New Jersey-based nonprofit, violated state charitable trust laws.

The suit says that trustees Ronald Moore and Karen Moore filed incomplete financial reports, misrepresented the purpose of the candy sales to the public and hired unregistered professional fundraisers who employed children under the age of 16 in violation of Illinois child labor laws.

The fundraisers, Dennie and Steven Gernenz, hired children to sell boxes of candy door-to-door in unfamiliar neighborhoods for longer hours than allowed by state law, the suit says.

Ryan is seeking both a temporary and a permanent injunction to stop the charity’s activities, as well as a full accounting and costs, fines and damages of at least $490,000.

This is not the first time that Ronald Moore has been a defendant in a suit filed by the Attorney General’s Office.

In 1992, he was named in a suit against a charity called Youth in Action, which also used children to sell candy door-to-door.

Youth in Action was put out of business as the result of that suit, the Attorney General’s Office says.

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