CWA Financial Secretary in Ohio Sentenced for Embezzlement

On February 22, Aaron Contreras, former secretary-treasurer of Communications Workers of America Local 84749, was sentenced in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio to 16 months in prison and three years of supervised release for embezzling $42,700 from the Fostoria, Ohio union.  He also was ordered to pay full restitution.  Contreras had pleaded guilty in October after being charged in September.  The actions follow a probe by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards and the Fostoria Police Department.…

Steelworkers President in Northern Pennsylvania Charged

On February 14, Daniel Guthrie, former president of United Steelworkers Local 10-583, was indicted in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania on one count of embezzling $8,189 in funds from the Bradford, Pa.-based union.  The charge follows an investigation by the U.S. labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.…

South Carolina Boeing Workers Reject Machinists Union Representation

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) has never lacked for persistence.  But after more than seven years of trying to organize workers at the Boeing assembly plant in North Charleston, S.C., it has little choice right now but to lay low.  On February 15, three-fourths of the employees at the facility, which builds the Boeing Dreamliner 787 commercial jet, voted against union representation.  The vote also represents a rebuke to the National Labor Relations Board, which back in December 2011 dropped an Unfair Labor Practices complaint against the company in the wake of an IAM victory in contract talks.  Significantly, the vote came one day before a visit by President Donald Trump, who has made domestic manufacturing a top priority issue.

Union Corruption Update covered this test of wills more than once in 2011, explaining the implications of the South Carolina situation for labor-management relations throughout …

Maryland Contractor Sentenced for Role in $1.7M+ LIUNA Scam

For a while, Gary Cooper had a lucrative deal going with Laborers International Union of North America Local 657 – until his business partners were caught.  On February 27, Cooper, principal owner of a Greenbelt, Md.-based building contractor, STS General Contracting, was sentenced in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to 68 months in prison for his role in embezzling more than $1.7 million in funds from the union, at the time based in Washington, D.C.  He also was ordered to pay the union $1.632 million in restitution and forfeit $1.734 million in illegally-derived proceeds.  Two other defendants, Anthony Frederick and Christopher Kwegan, were sentenced last month for their offenses.  The actions follow a joint probe by the FBI and the Labor Department.

According to prosecutors, Cooper, now 57, a resident of Kettering, Md., along with co-defendant area real estate agent and STS co-owner Christopher Kwegan, conspired with …

Wisconsin Heat & Frost Insulators Business Manager Charged

Teresa Adkins got greedy.  And she likely will get a prison sentence for her trouble.  On February 16, Adkins, former business manager of Heat and Frost Insulators Local 127, was charged in Waupaca County, Wisconsin Circuit Court with one count of theft and nine counts of forgery in the disappearance of more than $35,000 in funds from the Clintonville, Wisc.-based union, and possibly a lot more.  The complaint read:  “…(T)he defendant utilized her position and access to union funds to appropriate various amounts of money for her own purposes ranging from reimbursing herself for underperformed services and using a union charge card for personal purchases for both goods and services.”  The charges follow an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.

Adkins, now 46, a resident of Green Bay, served as business manager of International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers Local 127 from …

Steelworkers Local Secretary in Ohio Pleads Guilty to Theft

On February 17, Adele Dewey, former secretary-treasurer of United Steelworkers Local 811, pleaded guilty in the Ashtabula County, Ohio Court of Common Pleas to one count of theft in the amount of $4,224 and one count of forgery against the Andover, Ohio-based union.  She then was sentenced to 30 days of incarceration (suspended) and one year of supervised release, and ordered to pay a $250 fine and perform 40 hours of community service.  Dewey already had paid full restitution.  She had been charged last October.  The actions follow a probe by the Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.…

SPFPA President in Michigan Sentenced for Embezzlement

On February 15, Devon Madray, former president of Security, Police and Fire Professionals of America (SPFPA) Local 119, was sentenced in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan to five years of probation, and ordered to pay $20,097 in restitution and a $100 special assessment, for embezzling funds from the Roseville, Mich. union.  He had pleaded guilty last October after being indicted in July.  The actions follow an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.…

AFGE President in Texas Indicted for Wire Fraud

On February 14, Clementine Ray, former president of American Federation of Government Employees Local 219, was indicted in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas on one count of wire fraud in an unspecified sum from the Temple-based union.  The charge follows a probe by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.…

Locomotive Engineers Secretary in Ohio Charged with Theft

On February 8, Michael Mathis, former secretary-treasurer of Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen Division 34, was charged in the Franklin County, Ohio Court of Common Pleas with one count of theft in the amount of $5,784 from the Columbus-based union.  The charge follows an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.…

Probe Clears Teamster Secretary-Treasurer Ken Hall, but Issues Linger

Ken Hall is breathing easier.  But his union, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, isn’t quite out of the woods yet.  On February 17, former federal prosecutor Joseph diGenova, the union’s special independent investigator, withdrew obstruction charges against Hall, the IBT’s general secretary-treasurer and number two man behind General President James P. Hoffa.  In a letter to the union general counsel, diGenova wrote that Hall “did not play a personal role” in withholding over 32,000 documents, including emails, related to corruption probes.  The Teamsters, which had finalized a settlement with the Justice Department in January 2015 to phase out over two decades of tight federal supervision, remains under scrutiny.  That’s not good news for Northern California Teamster leader Rome Aloise.

Union Corruption Update examined this issue in detail last November.  The Teamsters for many years had been trying to extricate themselves from the terms of a March 1989 civil …

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