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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, April 19, 2006

More charges expected in Salvation Army case

By Ken Kobayashi
Advertiser Courts Writer

Timothy Janusz

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A city deputy prosecutor says more charges are expected against a former Salvation Army employee indicted by an O'ahu grand jury yesterday on seven felony counts accusing him of stealing $150,000 that was supposed to go to the charity.

City Deputy Prosecutor Chris Van Marter told a state judge that Timothy Janusz is under investigation for "at least five additional potential offenses" involving real property and donations while he worked at the Salvation Army.

Van Marter later said the charges will be filed as soon as the investigation is completed.

Janusz, 48, of Kailua, was arrested last week and held on $1 million cash bail on charges of theft and money laundering. The grand jury yesterday added five more counts, including two racketeering counts alleging he unlawfully owned or operated a business.

He was fired from his job last week after having worked for the Salvation Army since July 2003 as the organization's director of planned giving.

The seven charges in yesterday's indictment each carry maximum prison terms of 10 years, except for a forgery count, which carries a prison term of up to five years.

Circuit Judge Derrick Chan increased Janusz's bail to $5 million at the request of Van Marter, who said Janusz got a 77-year-old man to write three checks totaling $150,000 to a company the defendant created. Janusz then deposited the checks into the company's bank account, prosecutors said.

Van Marter said Janusz's criminal history included a 1997 federal conviction in Colorado of defrauding a couple and then escaping from a prison camp in South Dakota in January 1998 while serving a 5 1/4-year federal prison term. Janusz went to Mexico and Belize, then to the Dutch Antilles, where he was caught in March 1999, Van Marter said. He then fought extradition before he was returned to finish serving the rest of his sentence, Van Marter said.

After serving his prison term, Janusz came to Hawai'i, the deputy prosecutor said.

Janusz completed his federal supervisory release, which is similar to probation, in January, but still faces a pending federal charge of escaping from the camp, Van Marter said.

Van Marter told the judge Janusz committed the other potential offenses while on supervisory release.

The deputy prosecutor later described Janusz as a certified public accountant and a lawyer who has been disbarred.

"What he did was not particularly sophisticated for an attorney, but for a victim, it could be perceived as complex, deceptive and fraudulent," he said.

A federal appeals court opinion that affirmed the federal fraud convictions described Janusz as a private financial consultant who had a law degree and claimed to have practiced law in South Dakota.

Van Marter said he was notified that Janusz had been disbarred.

The deputy prosecutor yesterday also praised the Honolulu Police Department's white-collar crime unit, which he said acted quickly to recover the $150,000 in the account.

Janusz is scheduled to be arraigned this month. At that time, he is expected to plead not guilty and get a trial date.

Jack Tonaki, state public defender whose office represents Janusz, declined to comment.

Reach Ken Kobayashi at kkobayashi@honoluluadvertiser.com.