Marion town clerk pleads not guilty to six larceny charges
BROCKTON — Marion Town Clerk Ray Pickles pled not guilty to six charges of larceny at his arraignment in Plymouth Superior Court on April 12.
Pickles is accused of embezzling more than $675,000 from the Carver Marion Wareham Regional Refuse Disposal District while serving as its executive director.
Chief Trial Counsel for the Attorney General’s Criminal Bureau James O'Brien and Special Assistant Attorney General of the Inspector General’s Investigations Division, John Brooks were present at the hearing as prosecutors.
Pickles was released on personal recognizance. His next court date will be a pre-trial conference scheduled for June 6 at 2 p.m. at Plymouth County Superior Court in Plymouth.
Pickles’ term as elected town clerk will not expire until 2020. Shortly after the criminal charges were filed, Marion Selectmen wrote a letter to Pickles asking that he resign. So far as is known, there has been no response to that letter. Pickles also previously served as Town Administrator in Marion.
In 2017, Pickles’ alleged wrongdoing was discovered after Wareham, Marion and Carver received bills from the district for the first time in five years.
The bills ranged from $25,000 for Marion to $89,000 for Wareham.
Among some of the expenses Pickles allegedly paid for with the district’s funds was a catering bill for a 14-person dinner party and $13,793 to refuel his personal boat in Marion.
Former District Board Chairman Robert Tinkham who is a co-defendent to Pickles plead not guilty to larceny over $250 and false claim to government agency.
Tinkham along with Pickles’ wife, Diane Bondi-Pickles, were sued by the District for fraud, conspiracy, improperly possessing money, improper use of power, and violating consumer protection law.
The state alleges Tinkham accepted $65,000 from Pickles for services he did not perform.
From 2010 to 2018, the complaint in the District’s lawsuit accused Tinkham of conspiring with Pickles to take $262,000 of their funds for his own personal use.
Pickles’ term as elected town clerk will not expire until 2020. Shortly after the criminal charges were filed, Marion Selectmen wrote a letter to Pickles asking that he resign. So far, there has been no response to that letter. Pickles also previously served as Town Administrator in Marion.
If found guilty in the criminal case, Pickles will face a fine of up to $25,000 and imprisonment for up to two years or be imprisoned for up to five years.
Tinkham could face civil penalties of up to $11,000 per false claim as well as additional costs and fees and up to five years in prison if he is found guilty.
Pickles, who is 85, served as the regional refuse district’s executive director for 45 years before he was fired in 2018 after the Waste Disposal District found irregularities in their finances.