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Feds Notify 13,000 Homeowners In Troy Kelley Case

Retired fire commissioner Tim Bruner holds a victim notification letter he received from the U.S. Department of Justice in connection with the real estate services fraud case against Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley.
Austin Jenkins
/
Northwest News Network
Retired fire commissioner Tim Bruner holds a victim notification letter he received from the U.S. Department of Justice in connection with the real estate services fraud case against Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley.

The U.S. Department of Justice has notified around 13,000 homeowners in connection with the real estate services fraud case against Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley. The notifications went to former customers of two title companies that contracted with Kelley before he was elected state auditor.

Retired Thurston County Fire Commissioner Tim Bruner received one of the letters and showed up Friday for a pretrial hearing in the Kelley case.

“I was curious to see what would happen and I had no idea he was the state auditor,” Bruner said with a laugh.

Bruner refinanced his former home during the time period Kelley is alleged to have withheld funds that should have been refunded to homeowners. Bruner said if he was owed a refund then he feels the escrow company had some obligation to make sure Kelley, as their contractor, issued it.

“There’s got to be somebody running the show saying ‘you did this for this person, you owe them a refund. Make sure it’s done,’” Bruner said.

Kelley has pleaded not guilty to all charges and faces trial later this month. The federal government is sending out the letters under the federal Victims’ Rights and Restitution Act.

Copyright 2016 Northwest News Network

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy, as well as the Washington State Legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."