Plumbers Secretary in Michigan Pleads Guilty to Stealing $400K

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On April 7, April Franklin, formerly office secretary for United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 333 and former bookkeeper for the union's apprenticeship fund, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan to embezzling a combined more than $400,000 from the Lansing-based labor organizations. An employee of the union during 1999-2009, she was charged this January with her husband in the theft of $234,331.33 from the training fund and $40,886 from the union general fund during 2008-09. The plea agreement also refers to her stealing additional funds, bringing the total to $411,979.37. She is set for sentencing on July 25. The indictment and guilty plea follow an investigation by the Labor Department's Office of Labor-Management Standards, Office of Inspector General and Employee Benefits Security Administration.