There wasn’t much question about whether Carolyn Hall had taken union funds. At least it could be said that she was able and willing to return them. On August 7, Hall, formerly bookkeeper for Laborers International Union of North America Local 1197, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois to one count of embezzling $26,491 in funds from the McLeansboro (Hamilton County), Ill.-based union. She had been charged this past April following an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards. Court records show that she already has made full restitution.
Prosecutors had alleged that Hall, 53, a resident of McLeansboro, during roughly July 2012-February 2014 used her position with the union, which represents construction and other workers in more than a dozen counties in southern and central Illinois, to divert Local 1197 member dues to her own personal use. At sentencing, scheduled for December 1, she faces up to five years in prison, a fine of up to $250,000, and supervised release of up to three years. By making full restitution, hopefully she has lightened that punishment.