On October 23 and 24, Lawrence Marable and Deborah Powell, respectively, former president and treasurer of Local 1793 of the American Federation of Government Employees, were sentenced in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania for thefts from the Philadelphia union totaling $184,129.85.Marable will serve 18 months in prison to be followed by three years of probation; Powell will serve a year in prison to be followed by two years of probation.Prosecutors had charged that the pair conspired to convert dues checks and issue local expense checks to their own use.Each was held separately liable for restitution.The sentences follow a joint investigation by the U.S.
On November 13, Willie Harris, former secretary-treasurer of American Federation of Government Employees Local 2823 in Cleveland, was indicted in the Court of Common Pleas of Cuyahoga County, Ohio for theft exceeding $5,000, misuse of a credit card, and unauthorized access to a computer.The local represents employees of the Department of Veterans Affairs.(OLMS, 11/21/08).
Ex-Administrator Sentenced for Role in Royalties Fraud Scheme
On October 24, Krista Yeatts, former office manager of International Association of Machinists Local 2444, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina to embezzling union funds in the amount of $47,746.01.She was charged in July.The union is based in Winston-Salem.The plea follows an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.(OLMS, 11/5/08).
Ex-Bookkeeper in Cincinnati Pleads Guilty to Embezzlement
On October 6, Karimah Bailey, former treasurer of American Federation of Government Employees Local 3197 in Seattle, was sentenced in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington to a year and a day in jail plus three years of supervised release for embezzling funds and making false entries on the union’s annual financial reporting form.Bailey, who pleaded guilty in April, also will have to pay restitution in the amount of $98,802.17.The sentencing follows an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.(OLMS, 10/20/08).
Los Angeles Local Office Manager Charged with Embezzlement
New York has many public employees.And they produce a substantial pot of union dues.Carol Bruno saw an opportunity to help herself to some of that money.If she thought she wasn’t going to be caught, she guessed wrong.On October 9, Bruno, a clerk with the New York State Department of Health and a former treasurer with local and regional branches of the Civil Service Employees Association (CSEA), was indicted by a federal grand jury in Syracuse on charges of stealing more than $16,000 from the Albany union.
Gambling losses, and thefts from union treasuries to cover them, have ruined more than a few careers of labor officials and employees.On occasion, they’ve nearly ruined unions outright.Edna Latimore provides a case in point.On August 7, the former treasurer of American Federation of Government Employees Local 900 in St. Louis pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri to embezzling around $77,000 in funds from her union and then attempting to cover up the thefts by making false statements on a Department of Labor financial report.She is due to be sentenced in October.
Zona Albritton submitted bid proposals and invoices on behalf of her union.That was until the union discovered the true beneficiary of these awards – herself. On June 26, Albritton was sentenced to one year in prison in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia for embezzling slightly over $75,000 in funds from the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees.Albritton, manager of general services for AFSCME, the nation’s largest public employees’ union, was charged in March and pleaded guilty in April.She’ll also have to pay restitution.
On June 16, Kurt Swanstrom, former financial secretary of Steelworkers Local 5-1560, was sentenced in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio to three years probation and ordered to pay $12,327.52 in restitution plus a $150 special assessment.Swanstrom pled guilty in March to embezzlement, falsification of union records and filing false financial reports.The local is based in Ashland, Ohio.(OLMS, 7/7/08).
The pasts of Lori Sommers and Tracy Shultz are one step closer to haunting them.The pair, currently a site manager and an administrative assistant for the City of Madison, Wisconsin’s Community Development Authority (CDA), each for a few years had worked for Local 60 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.That’s the part of their past they wish would go away.The pair had been charged in DaneCounty Circuit Court in April with defrauding the union out of more than $17,000.Now, following a preliminary hearing, the court on June 3 ordered them to stand trial.
On April 24, Richard J. Vincent, former treasurer of American Federation of Government Employees Local 3951, was charged in CambriaCounty (Pa.) Court with two counts of embezzling funds from the Altoona-based union in the amount of $43,694.85.The charges follow a joint investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Labor-Management Standards and Office of Inspector General.The local represents employees at the federal prison in Loretto, Pa., west of Altoona.(OLMS, 5/21/08).
Local Secretary-Treasurer in Ohio Pleads Guilty to Theft