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April 19, 2017: Marta Gates-Jones Statement Of Facts

   Marta Gates-Jones Statement Of Facts

Beginning in January 2005, the Defendant, Marta Gates-Jones (“Defendant”), served as the Office Manager for Washington, Maryland, Delaware Service Station and Automotive Repair Association (WMDA). Among her duties as Office Manager, the Defendant assumed the role of Campaign Administrator for the Service Station Dealers Political Action Committee in January of 2012 and was tasked with the duty of filing the PAC’s campaign finance reports. Upon assuming that role, the Defendant used a stamp with the signature of the Treasurer, James Giles, to write checks with no need for the Treasurer’s signature.

An extensive investigation, which included analysis of the bank account for Greater Washington Maryland Service Station Dealers Political Action Fund, revealed that, from on or about January 27, 2012 through and including on or about July 31, 2015, the Defendant willfully and knowingly exerted unauthorized control over the campaign funds of Service Station Dealers PAC for her personal use and benefit. During the above-stated time frame, the Defendant wrote approximately sixty-six unauthorized checks and cashed same retaining the funds for personal use. In the subject line on each of the sixty-six checks, the Defendant fraudulently wrote “commission/salary.” This activity persisted until August of 2015, when the PAC’s Chairperson reviewed the campaign finance reports. The Defendant was subsequently terminated from WMDA on July 29, 2016.

When confronted by investigators from the Office of the State Prosecutor on December 13, 2016 and shown the checks written payable to M.G. Jones, the Defendant admitted to writing and endorsing the checks to herself. The total theft from the PAC amounted to $42,650.00.

In addition to the theft, on or about January 15, 2014, in Anne Arundel County, Maryland, the Defendant willfully made false statements and entries on the PAC’s 2014 Annual report. The records obtained from Bank of America confirmed that the Defendant reported the checks she wrote to herself as “media expenses” on the campaign finance reports submitted to the State Board of Elections beginning with the PAC’s 2012 Annual report. All campaign finance reports require the signer to certify under penalty of perjury that all information is complete and accurate to the best of their knowledge.

If called to testify, a representative from Service Station Dealers Political Action Committee would testify that the Defendant was not authorized and never had permission to use the campaign funds for her personal use or expense.

All of these events occurred in the State of Maryland.