Black Lives Matter paid nearly $4M to board secretary, co-founder's brother, and father of her child

Black Lives Matter paid nearly $4M to board secretary, co-founder's brother, and father of her child

The Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation dished out nearly $4 million in consulting payments to its board secretary, co-founder Patrisse Cullors' brother, and the father of Cullors' child.

BLM Global Network, the movement's primary nonprofit, paid $2.1 million to Bowers Consulting, a firm run by Shalomyah Bowers, the foundation's board secretary, between July 2020 and June 2021, according to tax forms the BLM Global Network Foundation provided to the Associated Press.

The nonprofit also pushed $1.8 million to individuals with close ties to Cullors, who stepped away from the group last year.

The payments include $970,000 to Trap Heals LLC, a company established by Damon Turner, the father of Cullors' child, and $840,000 to Cullors Protection LLC, a security firm owned by her brother, Paul Cullors, the tax forms show.

The AP report also confirms that the foundation had used its funds to purchase a $6 million Los Angeles mansion, which came under fire following a New York Magazine report.

BLM Global Network hauled in $77 million in contributions during its 2021 fiscal year, and it ended it with $42 million in assets, the tax forms show. It handed out $25 million in grants.

Patrisse Cullors did not receive any payments directly from the organization or to her consulting firm, according to the forms.

On Monday morning, Fox News Digital attempted to obtain the tax forms from the Elias Law Group, a firm helmed by Democratic superlawyer Marc Elias. Elias's firm, which previously had possession of BLM's books, denied Fox News Digital access to its office. The firm also refused to send anyone downstairs to the lobby.

Fox News Digital also visited the office of Rubino & Company in Bethesda, Maryland, a financial preparer for the BLM Global Network, but was denied records and directed to the organization itself.

Fox News Digital also requested the records directly with BLM Global Network Foundation and Perlman + Perlman, a Mesa, Arizona-based law firm, which appears in state filings as having its books, but did not receive responses.

The new tax forms are the first look inside BLM Global Network's finances. The organization was previously fiscally sponsored and did not have to report tax forms to the IRS, but broke away into its own legal entity in 2020.

BLM Global Network Foundation did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the consulting payments.

The Associated Press contributed reporting.

Joe Schoffstall