A former agent at a Washington travel company has been charged with stealing nearly 3.7 million frequent-flier miles from high-end clients.
Karen Yeakel was fired from her job at Stellar Travel in Bellevue in June 2011. Company partner Susan Bluhm says it was after discrepancies in the frequent-flier account of one of Yeakel's clients turned out to be just the tip of the iceberg.
According to a wire fraud charge unsealed Friday in federal court, Yeakel used the frequent flier miles to buy 135 flights for herself and her family, worth more than $109,000 -- but that's not all. She's also accused of using the credit cards of some clients to buy plane tickets, then providing those tickets to other customers at steep discounts.
Yeakel's lawyer did not immediately return an email seeking comment.