David Veltri may have been a bit player, but his role in a much larger 11-year scam to defraud the New York City District Council of Carpenters wasn’t about to go unnoticed.Federal authorities on June 15 announced that Veltri, a shop steward for the council, an affiliate of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners, had pleaded guilty to accepting bribes totaling at least $8,000 from the owners of a contracting firm, Tri-Built Construction, Inc.He was one of several people who skimmed union benefit funds to pay nonunion workers off the books and underreport hours worked by union employees.
On May 25, David Taylor, formerly financial secretary for Carpenters and Millwrights Local 1402, was sentenced in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia to 12 months and one day in prison and fined $35,074.18.Last October he pleaded guilty to one count of making false statements on Department of Labor financial reporting forms in order to cover up his embezzlement of $72,422 in union funds.He previously paid full restitution plus more than $14,000 in interest to the Richmond-based union, affiliated with the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners.The sentencing comes after an investigation by the Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.(OLMS, 6/12/07).
Upstate New York Local Treasurer Sentenced for Embezzlement
On May 3, Walter Fisher, former treasurer for Local 1949 of the United Transportation Union, pleaded guilty in federal court for the District of Maryland to one count of embezzling funds from the Ellicott City-based union in an amount greater than $30,000 but less than $70,000.The guilty plea follows an investigation by the Labor Department.(OLMS, 5/30/07).
Former Secretary-Treasurer of Pittsburgh-Area Local Sentenced
John T. Daley for four years embezzled nearly $1.2 million from the New York State Nurses Association, the 34,000-member union of which he had been chief financial officer.Now he’s going to pay a price.On March 30, Daley received a prison sentence in Albany County Court of three-and-a-third years to 10 years.He also will have to make restitution.Daley pleaded guilty in January to second-degree grand larceny, after initially claiming innocence due to impaired judgment from overuse of prescription drugs.The sentencing follows an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards and the police department of the Town of Colonie, located north of Albany.(OLMS, 4/23/07).
Business Manager of Texas Local Indicted for Embezzlement
On March 23, Kay Joy Andrews, former bookkeeper for Local 1780 of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners, was sentenced in U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada to five years probation, including six months of home confinement, and ordered to pay $40,086.50 in restitution.She pleaded guilty last September to one count of embezzling union funds in the amount of $55,765.55.The sentencing follows a joint investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards and Office of Inspector General.(OLMS, 4/5/07).
Ex-Bookkeeper of Atlanta Local Agrees to Probation, Restitution
All contractors want to minimize costs.But sometimes that desire leads to lawbreaking.Such was the case for Patrick McCaul and John McGonnell, co-owners of the Bronx, N.Y. construction firm, Tri-Built Construction, Inc.On January 9, the two were arrested and indicted in U.S. District Court in Manhattan for participating in an 11-year scheme to defraud the New York City District Council of Carpenters, an affiliate of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners.The pair allegedly used nonunion labor in violation of an existing contract, paid union carpenters off the books, and bribed shop stewards and an office employee of the union benefit funds to assist in the fraud.The union’s shortfall during 1993-2004 came to at least $6.5 million – and that’s just the benefit funds.McCaul and McGonnell each were charged with one count of conspiracy, embezzlement and bribery.
In Northwest Indiana, the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners appear to be as adept at mishandling funds as they are at handling building materials.In 2005 Gerry Nannenga, formerly president of the union’s Local 1005 and then secretary-treasurer of the Indiana-Kentucky Regional Council of Carpenters, was sentenced to 18 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to taking a bribe years earlier to vote in favor of using $10 million in union pension money to buy 55 acres of choice real estate.This past September 21, a federal jury decided against two other union officials in a separate scandal.They are Paul Hernandez, Nannenga’s replacement as Local 1005 president, and Kenneth Castaldi, head of the local’s apprenticeship training program.Each was convicted on theft, mail fraud and other charges.
It is little secret that much of New York City’s drywall industry is on the take, and that a number of contractors work closely with union bosses and the Mafia to maximize revenues.But one by one, elements in that network are being removed.On October 26, John Barone, a drywall contractor, pleaded guilty in Manhattan federal court to one count of conspiracy to evade employment taxes.Barone and several other persons named in a massive Justice Department indictment, diverted wages, cash payments and other benefits to themselves without reporting them on W-2, 1099 or other IRS reporting documents.Bearing the burden of this unofficial “mob tax” are the taxpaying public and workers paid substandard wages.Barone had copped a plea to Count 77 in a superseding indictment.
“Going out golfing and getting paid for it” was how Michael “Mickey” Annucci described the requirements of his job.He spoke prematurely.Annucci, 54, an organizer and shop steward for Local 157 of New York’s United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners, had embezzled at least $10,000 from his union, according to an indictment by a Manhattan federal grand jury unsealed in mid October.The sum represents wages, pension and health benefits denied to members because of Annucci’s time-sheet underreporting.
On September 26, Lawrence Marable and Deborah Powell, respectively, the former president and treasurer of Local 1793 of the American Federation of Government Employees, were each charged in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania with five counts of property theft, one count of making false record entries, and one count of conspiracy to steal $187,000 worth of property.The local represents employees at the VA Hospital in Philadelphia located at University and Woodland Avenues.The charges follow a joint investigation by the Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS) and the Department of Veterans Affairs’ Office of Inspector General.(OLMS, 10/9/06).
D.C. Local Ex-President Sentenced for Embezzlement