Woman Linked to Corruption Probe Admits Falsifying Taxes

From a Times Staff Writer

The daughter of a key figure in the Carson corruption case pleaded guilty in federal court Wednesday to filing a false tax return.

Kelly Walecki, 32, of Carlsbad faces up to six months in prison under terms of a plea bargain, which may require her to testify against her father, Robert Dennis Pryce Jr., a Los Angeles attorney and former U.S. bankruptcy trustee.

Pryce has been indicted on charges of soliciting bribes for Carson City Council members and collecting kickbacks from a company he hired to dispose of properties in bankruptcy.

According to prosecutors, Pryce arranged for Nelson Shelton and Associates to funnel half of its real estate commissions to Walecki, although she did nothing to earn the money.

Walecki allegedly received more than $319,000 from the firm, which has not been charged, and passed more than $135,000 to her father.

In her guilty plea, Walecki admitted declaring $20,000 of $39,000 she received from Nelson Shelton in 1999.

U.S. District Judge A. Howard Matz set sentencing for Sept. 8 and allowed Walecki to remain free on bond.

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