In 2012, Republican James Watkins publically alleged that his Democrat opponent (then-state Rep. Troy Kelley) had been involved in misappropriation of $3.8 million from mortgage borrowers, money laundering, tax evasion, and even burglary.
Watkins backed up his accusations with evidence “based on lawsuits over the past decade involving Kelley and business associates.” The Capitol Record wrote at the time,
“Watkins posted court documents that he says support his claims on a website called factchecktroykelley.com.
“Included on the site are documents from a 2001 wrongful termination lawsuit that Kelley filed in Southern California against his former employer, First American Title. The company accused Kelley of stealing a painting from the firm’s Glendale offices after he was fired; Kelley denies he was there.”
You can find the website referred to by the Capitol Record here.
Kelley denied the accusations and, apparently, that was enough for voters. Kelley currently serves as the state auditor.
Unfortunately for Kelley, though his denial may have been enough for Washington voters, it isn’t for federal investigators. This week, federal agents searched Kelley’s home and the U.S. Justice Department subpoenaed records from his office. There is little information as to the purpose of the search and subpoena.
“The reason for the search was not immediately apparent.
“Before being elected auditor in 2012, Kelley had been accused in a lawsuit of shady business dealings and tax evasion…
“In 2010, a federal lawsuit accused an escrow-services business owned by Kelley of “fraudulently transferring funds, intentional spoliation of evidence, shady business schemes, tax evasion, and hiding from creditors” nearly $3.8 million.
“The lawsuit was brought by Old Republic National Title, a business customer of Kelley’s firm, United National, which tracked loan and real-estate documents for large title and escrow companies…
“Court records said Kelley had opened bank accounts in Nevada and elsewhere and moved money from one bank to the next. The money ended up in accounts that would have allowed him to wire the money to a trust set up in Belize, an offshore haven for shielding assets.
“Kelley acknowledged in a deposition that the move allowed him to defer paying taxes on the income. He said only a small amount of money ended up in Belize.”
Examples of Democrat corruption continue to mount in Washington State. Ironically, these allegations of corruption touch the very agency charged with the responsibility of preventing, curbing and exposing it.
Shift will keep you updated as more information becomes available.
Photo from The Columbian.