A federal grand jury in Chicago returned an indictment Aug. 4 against two union bosses for engaging in a pattern of criminal activity that included fraud, soliciting kickbacks, money laundering, and illegal currency transactions. The criminal indictments were returned against John Serpico and Maria Busillo, both executives of the Central States Joint Board. CSJB is a labor group that administers pension and health-welfare plans for eight Chicago-based local unions, including LIUNA. Serpico also heads the Ill. Int'l Port Authority and has been a major political patron of Ill. Govs. James Thompson (R), Jim Edgar (R) and George Ryan (R) as well as Chicago Mayor Richard Daley (D).
Serpico was CSJB president from 1975-94 and is still a consultant. Serpico was also a LIUNA vice president until he was forced to resign as a component of DOJ's effort in 1995 to rid the union of corrupt influences. Busillo is the current CSJB president and holds top posts with several of the affiliated locals.