He may have been a sideshow to the main event, but Thomas Schuette has a lot more publicity than he wants. Schuette, a Long Island chiropractor, is a cousin of Brian McLaughlin, the convicted and now-sentenced former head of the New York City Central Labor Council (CLC), an umbrella group for some 400 unions in the metro area. McLaughlin last month received a 10-year sentence for thefts in excess of $3 million from the council and other sources. But some of his take was part of a family business.
Court papers reveal Schuette last October had received a sentence in federal court of three years of supervised release after pleading guilty in 2006 to fraudulently obtaining funds from the council in an amount totaling $145,000. He had billed the CLC for consulting work he never performed and passed some of the money along to McLaughlin. Schuette also persuaded McLaughlin to get union members to do construction work related to a film processing business in which he was heavily invested. In return for the favor, Schuette sent his cousin checks enabling Mrs. McLaughlin to buy a car. The offenses came to light at McLaughlin’s May 21 sentencing when U.S. Attorney Daniel Braun cited the sentencing of an unnamed co-conspirator. That person turned out to be Schuette. (New York Daily News, 5/22/09).