Jury selection begins in trial of Washington state auditor

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Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) _ Jury selection is under way in Tacoma in the trial of indicted Washington state Auditor Troy Kelley.

Kelley, the first Washington state official to be indicted in 35 years, faces a range of charges stemming from conduct that began before he was elected in 2012, when he ran a real-estate services firm. Prosecutors say he kept more than $1 million in fees he should have refunded to homeowners, failed to properly pay taxes and lied under oath in an effort to hide his actions.

U.S. District Judge Ronald Leighton and lawyers for Kelley and the government began vetting potential jurors Monday, beginning with questions about how much news coverage they’ve seen about the case.

Kelley took a seven-month leave of absence following his indictment but returned to work in December, over the objections of state officials who have called for his resignation.

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