Coming up this week, the sportsfishing guide industry on the Kenai wants to ban commercial setnet fishing in Cook Inlet; we have a couple of items about the Marine Stewardship Council, and a new face, but a familiar name at the helm of Trident Seafoods. We had help this week from KCHU’s Tony Gorman in Valdez, and KDLG’s Mike Mason in Dillingham.
Trident Seafoods founder and chairman Chuck Bundrant has appointed his son as the company’s new CEO. The appointment of Joe Bundrant had been expected, and became effective yesterday (Monday).
A year ago Trident announced that the younger Bundrant would be leading the company following the retirement this week of President Paul Padgett, who has served in that role since 2008. Padgett will continue to serve as a strategic advisor through the end of pollock A season in 2014.
The elder Bundrant, who founded Trident 40 years ago, expressed confidence in his son’s ability to lead the seafood giant, despite the challenges of falling prices for surimi, block and pollock roe, while costs are increasing.
Joe Bundrant said he was honored and humbled to take the helm.
His new management team will include Vic Scheibert as president of Alaska operations.
The Kodiak ringleader of a scheme to embezzle nearly a half-million dollars from Trident Seafoods was sentenced in U.S. District Court Monday. Isairis Wolfe will spend the next 46 months in federal prison and be forced to repay every penny she stole. The sentence was handed down by Chief U.S. District Court Judge Ralph Beistline in Anchorage.
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Aunnie Steward, from January 2008 through August 2010, Wolfe used her position as the bookkeeper for Trident Seafoods in Kodiak, to write company checks to four of her personal associates and one of their minor children. Anne Wilson, Jeremy Smith, Valerie Olivares, and Jamie Fathke were previously sentenced to prison.
The funds were discovered missing shortly after Wolfe was fired as the plant’s bookkeeper.
Wolfe said at sentencing that her addiction to meth clouded her judgment. She spent her half of the embezzled money on a new truck, diamonds and an addition to her house, among other things.
Judge Beistline noted that Wolfe’s scheme was motivated by greed, showed a lack of concern for her co-defendants, and abused the trust of her employer.
It’s not immediately clear where Wolfe will serve her nearly four years of prison time.
Coming up this week, herring fishing continues up the west coast, we get an update about what’s going on out in Adak, and Senator Murkowski breaks her silence on Arne Fuglvog’s new career, and some good king crab new. The Alaska Fisheries Report was made possible with help from KDLG’s Mike Mason and Ben Matheson in Dillingham, and KUCB’s Stephanie Joyce in Unalaska.
Two more sentences have been handed down in the Kodiak-based Trident Seafoods embezzlement scheme. A 31-year-old Kodiak man and a 35-year-old Texas woman were sentenced Tuesday by Chief U.S. District Court Judge Ralph Beistline for their role in embezzling over a half-million dollars from the seafood company.
Jeremy Smith of Kodiak was sentenced to 28-months in prison for helping Isairis Wolfeto steal $128,400 by cashing 16 fraudulent Trident checks.
Valerie Olivares of Corpus Christi received eight months for helping Wolfe cheat Trident out of $45,000 by cashing three fraudulent checks.
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Aunnie Steward, who prosecuted the case, Wolfe used her position as the bookkeeper for Trident Seafoods in Kodiak to write company checks to four friends, including Smith and Olivares.
Jamie Fathke was sentenced in January to four months prison for her role in embezzling $30,000, and Anne Wilson was sentenced in March to 16 months prison for her role in aiding the embezzlement of $289,000.
Wolfe is scheduled for sentencing next week (June 11).
Coming up this week, the State Legislature throws a commercial fisherman off the Board of Fish, Kodiak’s mayors are upset with Trident, and a new pilot program could help you save money running your boat. All that, and one processor will start the salmon season offering a dollar a pound across the board. We had help from KMXT’s Brianna Gibbs in Kodiak.