MOUNT VERNON WA Jan 17 2012 — A former human-resources manager of Trident Seafoods in Anacortes is charged with several counts of theft on reports that he funneled paychecks of former employees into his own bank account.
Oak Harbor resident Don Kelley, 44, faces three charges of first-degree theft and three charges of identity theft in Skagit County Superior Court.
He is alleged to have deposited nearly $200,000 for personal use from the accounts of temporary employees, the affidavit says.
According to records, he was fired in August 2011 after being confronted with the results of an internal audit.
Court records indicate prosecutors will seek an exceptionally high sentence for his alleged “major economic offense.”
Kelley began working for Trident after he was hired as a temporary employee by Manpower in 2005, police reports say. The next year, he secured a full-time position in Trident’s human-resources office and was promoted to human-resources manager in 2008. In that position, he had control over the personnel database and payroll, including employees’ banking details.
The first fraudulent deposits were entered that year, court records indicate.
The affidavit alleges that after three temporary employees hired by Manpower left Trident, Kelley changed their banking details to match his personal account and continued to report them as working so he could collect their paychecks.
Investigators found job applications to Trident and Jefferson County in which Kelley claimed he had bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees, which no one could verify, court records say. In a September search of Kelley’s home, detectives found three diplomas to match his claims.
That same day, Kelley told police that his academic claims were bogus, according to police reports. He also said that he was never a Coast Guard officer, as his job application says, but an enlisted sailor, the police reports say.
Kelley was scheduled to appear in Superior Court on Friday for arraignment, but he does not yet have an attorney, prosecutor Paul Nielsen said. He is set to appear Jan. 27.