Glenn Robert Smith dodged a bullet nearly two years ago in a civil lawsuit filed by his union. He might not be so fortunate this time around now that he’s facing federal criminal charges. On July 1, Smith, former comptroller for the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights (MRCC), was charged in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan in an information count with embezzling $499,087 from the Detroit-area labor organization. The charge follows a joint investigation by the IRS and the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards and Office of Inspector General.
Back on November 1, 2013, the Council filed a 17-count civil complaint in Detroit federal court against Smith and two other defendants – Smith’s wife, Laura Smith, and another individual, Stacey Adkins – for misuse of council assets. It also requested a temporary restraining order against Laura Smith on any attempt by her to hide, assign, convey, sell or otherwise dispose of the assets. The following month, however, the court denied the motion on grounds that the financial damages, while real, could be compensated in the absence of a restraining order. At the time, the MRCC estimated that damages “would exceed $25,000.” Apparently, that was an understatement. The Labor Department recently reported that Glenn Smith’s take alone was nearly $500,000. The U.S. Justice Department has yet to provide details on the case, but given the upward revised sum of the thefts, that situation is likely to change.