Postal Workers Secretary in Oklahoma Pleads Guilty to Embezzlement

It took more than eight years to discover that Brenda Walters was making off with the money. That’s better late than never. On March 24, Walters, former secretary-treasurer of American Postal Workers Union, Muskogee Area Local 7, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma to one count of embezzling about $95,100 from the Muskogee union. According to prosecutors, Walters, now 60, a resident of nearby Haskell, during the period January 2012-July 2020 or thereabouts, had converted union funds to her personal use without authorization. She faces up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine. The plea follows an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards. … Read More ➡

BLET Secretary in Southern California Charged with Embezzlement

On March 12, Stephen Rooze, former secretary-treasurer of Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen Division 662, was indicted in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California on four counts of embezzling $140,064 in funds from the Burbank-based union. The indictment follows an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.… Read More ➡

Chicago-Area UAW Shop Chairman Pleads Guilty to Forgery; Sentenced

On March 5, Milton Thomas, former shop chairman of United Auto Workers Local 890, pleaded guilty in Cook County (Ill.) Circuit Court to one count of forgery in an amount of between $10,000 and $100,000 from the Morton Grove union. Thomas allegedly had made out unauthorized checks to himself and then forged disbursement vouchers to give the appearance of the checks going for legitimate business purposes. Immediately after, he was sentenced to two years of probation, and ordered to pay a $75 fine and submit to DNA indexing. Thomas had been indicted in March 2018 following an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.

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Teacher Unions Continue to Thwart School Re-Openings, Demand Money

In the ongoing effort to isolate people from the COVID-19 virus, students arguably have suffered the greatest consequences. Teacher unions have had much to do with this situation. Across the nation, especially in and around cities, the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers have been aggressively resisting back-to-work orders. To the extent that schools are reopening, taxpayers are paying a premium. Tucked away in the new $1.9 trillion “stimulus” bill passed by Congress on March 10 and signed the next day by President Biden, the third such legislation in a little under a year, is more than $125 billion for reopening K-12 schools and colleges to full capacity. In light of a recent sharp drop in new cases, not to mention the relative immunity among youth, these subsidies more than anything else seem to be reciprocation for union political donations.  

COVID-19, or coronavirus, originated in mainland … Read More ➡

Western Michigan UAW Secretary Pleads Guilty to Embezzlement

On March 10, Brian Rittenhouse, former financial secretary of United Auto Workers Local 1320, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan to one count of embezzlement from the Grandville (near Grand Rapids)-based union. He had been indicted for embezzlement and false record-keeping in January. The actions follow an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.… Read More ➡

New Indictments Handed Down in Philadelphia IBEW Scandals

For John Dougherty, business manager for International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 98, there seems to be no end in sight. His nephew, Gregory Fiocca, a member and shop steward of the Philadelphia union, isn’t seeing a bright future either. On March 3, each were indicted in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on one count of conspiracy to commit extortion and 18 counts of extortion related to their alleged pressuring of Fiocca’s employer, an electrical contractor, to pay Fiocca for services not performed. The charges against Dougherty are separate from his multiple indictments of two years ago. The latest actions follow an investigation by the FBI and the Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards, Employee Benefits Security Administration, and Office of Inspector General.

As Union Corruption Update has noted in several articles, Electrical Workers Local 98 has been riddled with self-dealing. The edifice of corruption would … Read More ➡

Buffalo-Area Paramedics President Charged with Embezzlement

On February 18, Donald Snyder, former president of International Association of EMTs and Paramedics Local R2-394, was charged in U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York with embezzling $94,649 in funds from the Amherst (near Buffalo), N.Y. union and concealing the thefts in financial records. The union is affiliated with the National Association of Government Employees (NAGE), itself an affiliate of the Service Employees International Union. The charges follow a probe by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards and Office of Inspector General.… Read More ➡

President of Southern California UFCW Local Pleads Guilty to Fraud

On February 11, Aja Jasmin, former president of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 350C, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California to one count of wire fraud related to her theft of about $190,000 in funds from the Ontario (San Bernardino County)-based union. She had been charged last October in a two-count information with wire fraud and aggravated identity theft. The actions follow an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards and Office of Inspector General.… Read More ➡

Machinists Secretary-Treasurer in Maine Sentenced for Theft

Last Thursday, February 25, Jeffrey Phillips, former secretary-treasurer of International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers Local Lodge 836, was sentenced in U.S. District Court for the District of Maine to two years of probation for taking and removing assets in an amount of about $57,610. He also was ordered to pay full restitution, plus a $2,400 fine and a $100 special assessment. Phillips had pleaded guilty in February 2020 after being indicted in October 2019. The Kittery union represents employees at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. The actions follow an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.… Read More ➡

Fiat Chrysler Agrees to Plead Guilty and Pay $30M for Bribing UAW Officials

There was one unfinished piece of business after Fiat Chrysler and French auto giant PSA had merged. And it was an expensive piece at that. On January 27, the Auburn Hills, Mich.-based automaker announced that it would plead guilty in Detroit federal court to conspiring to bribe officials of the United Auto Workers with millions of dollars in cash and gifts via its worker training center to discourage the union from raising certain demands during collective bargaining. The company also agreed to pay a $30 million fine and undergo three years of probation. At least eight persons were convicted in this scandal since the initial indictments of July 2017. Prosecutors had charged Fiat Chrysler earlier that day. The actions follow a joint probe by the FBI, the IRS and the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards and Office of Inspector General.   

Last month was momentous for the auto … Read More ➡