Fmr. Fruit of the Loom Executive Faces Charges

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A former executive for Fruit of the Loom has been charged with hiring friends to do work that was never performed.

Six people have been indicted on charges of conspiracy to defraud the underwear and apparel maker.

A federal grand jury in Bowling Green returned indictments Monday against Kalen Watkins who was the Environmental Director for the Bowling Green headquarters, as well as Laura Leigh Wells of Lexington, Kenneth Scott Harris of Euless, Texas, Curtis Hopkins of Corbin, Kentucky, Ronald Pollock also of Bowling Green and Tyrone Tackett of Pensacola, Florida.

Watkins' position gave him power to award contracts and approve payment for invoices submitted by Fruit of the Loom contractors.

The indictment alleges that between May 1, 1998 and September 13, 2003, Watkins hired companies owned by his co-conspirators to perform services for fruit of the loom and approved fraudulent invoices submitted by those companies.

It also states that the five co-conspirators paid Watkins hundreds of thousands of dollars in kickbacks in return for Fruit of the Loom business.

Watkins, Hopkins, Pollock, and Tackett are also being charged with money laundering.
Watkins is also facing charges for obstruction of justice and fabricating documents in response to Grand jury subpoena.

All of the defendants are scheduled to appear for arraignment on Wednesday here in Bowling Green.

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