Former Fasteners executive pleads guilty to tax evasion

January 28, 2019

A former executive of Fasteners Inc. pleaded guilty last week to tax evasion for not reporting $244,000 in income to the Internal Revenue Service over a four-year span.

William Keith Jones also agreed to pay restitution for the money, which he allegedly took from the Spokane Valley company, according to the plea agreement filed in federal district court in Spokane.

Jones was Fasterners’ chief financial officer and general manager. He prepared and filed fraudulent income tax returns from 2012 through 2015, failing to pay nearly $74,000 in taxes on unreported income, court documents say.

“The tax returns did not include money that he converted to his own personal use and benefit from Fasteners,” according to the plea agreement.

At a sentencing April 23, federal prosecutors are expected to contend Jones owes an additional $19,000 for a fraudulent tax return filed in 2011. His wife, Deanna Jones, was unaware of her husband’s actions, according to court documents.

Jones agreed to plead guilty to four counts of income tax evasion. During a monitored conversation in 2016, Jones admitted the funds he converted to his personal use from Fasteners were a “tax dodge” and “it kind of snowballed” on him, according to court documents.

In the plea agreement, the federal government said it would dismiss a related wire fraud case against Jones. In that case, Jones was accused of using at least $120,648 in company funds for personal expenses, including tuition payments at Washington State University and Whitworth University, credit card bills and landscaping at this residence.

In the plea agreement, Jones agreed to pay restitution in an amount up to $310,450, to be determined by the court, to other victims – an individual identified as “D.H.” in court documents and Berkley North Pacific Insurance Co.

Dennis Hanson, the former owner of Fasteners, said he could not comment on the plea agreement. The company was sold to Fastenal Co. of Minnesota in late 2015.

Penalties for federal income tax evasion include up to five years in prison,three years of supervised release, up to $250,000 in fines and the payment of restitution.

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