Heat & Frost Insulators Training Fund Official in Ohio Sentenced for Thefts

If Terry Doan had been willing to play by the rules of his predecessors, he probably wouldn’t be in his current predicament. Last Wednesday, June 19, Doan, formerly secretary-treasurer and trustee of the Joint Apprenticeship Training Committee of Heat & Frost Insulators and Allied Workers Local 84, was sentenced in Youngstown, Ohio federal court to one year in prison, to be followed by three years of probation, for thefts over a five-year period from the Kent-based union. He also was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $195,446. Doan had been indicted last November, and pleaded guilty this February following an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA).

According to prosecutors, Doan, now in his early 60s, a resident of Deerfield (Portage County), Ohio, back in 2012 used his union positions to rescind a requirement that training fund checks above a certain amount … Read More ➡

AFSCME President in Wisconsin Charged with Embezzlement

Linda Woodford admits she acted stupidly. She should have thought about that beforehand. On June 12, Woodford, former president of American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 727, was charged in Dunn County (Wisconsin) Circuit Court with embezzling more than $4,000 from the Menomonie-based union, which represents nursing home employees. The charge follows an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.

Woodford, now 41, a resident of Glenwood City (St. Croix County), headed the union during December 2015-July 2017. According to prosecutors, she sued the last few months of her tenure to steal $4,055.37 by writing more than two dozen unauthorized union checks either to herself or other people and by making one unauthorized cash withdrawal. In October 2018, more than a year after her dismissal, she admitted writing the checks. She emphasized that she “needed the money” and used the union checking account as … Read More ➡

Southern California Steelworkers Officials Plead Guilty; Sentenced

On June 3, Joan Dutton, former president of United Steelworkers Local 2801, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California to one count of concealment and destruction of financial records of the Signal Hill-based union in connection with thefts in the amount of nearly $16,000. She then was sentenced to two years of probation and ordered to pay a $500 fine and a $25 special assessment. Nine days later, on June 12, her co-defendant, local secretary-treasurer Tatia Clark, pleaded guilty to the same offenses, and received the same sentence. The pair allegedly had removed the records back in 2010 after the union announced a pending audit. In July 2016 they were charged in a four-count indictment. The actions follow a probe by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.… Read More ➡

Transportation Communications Secretary-Treasurer in Ohio Pleads Guilty

On June 10, Bud Sherwood, former secretary-treasurer of Transportation Communications Union (TCU) Lodge 6546, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio to one count of embezzlement of funds in the sum of $10,813 from the Bellevue (near Sandusky) union, which represents railroad and other transportation employees. TCU is an affiliate of the International Association of Machinists. Sherwood had been charged last month following a probe by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.… Read More ➡

Chattanooga VW Workers Again Vote to Remain Nonunion Despite No Support from Management

Give the United Auto Workers credit: It doesn’t give up easily. But the union’s years-long effort to organize the Volkswagen assembly plant in Chattanooga once again has met with defeat. Last Friday, June 14, VW management announced that its full-time permanent workers there had voted to reject union representation. The 833-776 margin was even closer than the 712-626 “no” vote in February 2014. UAW spokesman Brian Rothenberg claims the outcome was due to outside manipulation. This assertion resembles the rhetoric during the previous aftermath when the UAW called upon the National Labor Relations Board to nullify the result, a complaint it eventually dropped. VW headquarters in Germany, while not formally capitulating to the union as before, remains a passive partner.

The Chattanooga Volkswagen facility has been an organizing prize for the United Auto Workers since its spring 2011 grand opening. Built on a 1,400-acre site in an industrial park, … Read More ➡

Indiana AFSCME Secretary-Treasurer Pleads Guilty to Theft; Sentenced

On June 5, Charlotte McDaniel, former secretary-treasurer of American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 3826, pleaded guilty in Marion County, Indiana Superior Court to one count of theft of funds in an amount of between $750 and $50,000 from the union, which represents Indianapolis public school bus drivers. She then was sentenced to a year in jail, with all but two days suspended, and ordered to pay $4,082 in restitution. McDaniel had been indicted in March following an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.… Read More ➡

Civilian Technicians Secretary in Maryland Charged with Theft

On May 31, John Scarcella, former secretary-treasurer of Association of Civilian Technicians Local 125, was charged in the Circuit Court for Baltimore County, Md. with one count of theft from the Middle River-based union in a sum of more than $10,000 but less than $100,000. The charge follows an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.… Read More ➡

San Francisco NTEU Chapter President Hit with Superseding Indictment

The news for Jonathon Ortino keeps getting worse. On June 4, Ortino, former president of National Treasury Employees Union Chapter 165, was charged in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in a six-count superseding indictment with offenses relating to his making unauthorized electronic funds transfer in the sum of $4,500 from a union account to a personal account. He previously had been charged in March 26 in a three-count indictment with concealing the thefts in three consecutive annual financial reports. The actions follow an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.

According to the original charges, Ortino, now 43, a resident of San Bruno, Calif., falsely stated in LM-3 statements to the Labor Department that NTEU Chapter 165 made no loans of more than $250 to any union officer or member during 2014, 2015 or 2016. Moreover, he allegedly understated the amount of … Read More ➡

Philadelphia-Area Contractor Sentenced for Theft, Bribery in IBEW Corruption Probe

For George Peltz, running a business and ripping off a union often meant the same thing. That’s why he’s no longer involved in either. On May 20, Peltz, a Philadelphia-area contractor, was sentenced in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania to 18 months in prison and two years of probation for bribery, theft from a benefit fund, and tax fraud related to his dealings with International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 98. He also paid nearly $1 million in restitution. Peltz had pleaded guilty in January. The actions are part of a larger federal and state joint probe of corruption in Philadelphia that thus far has implicated a city council member, a Pennsylvania Supreme Court justice, a couple of contractors and several Local 98 officials.

Union Corruption Update earlier had analyzed a sweeping federal indictment unsealed on January 30 against eight persons in the overlapping worlds of … Read More ➡

Ex-SEIU Official in Chicago Indicted for Conspiracy, Wire Fraud

On May 7, Robert Kurtycz, former comptroller for the Service Employees International Union’s Chicago and Midwest Regional Joint Board, was indicted in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois on one count of conspiracy to commit commercial bribery plus six counts of wire fraud. One of the wire fraud charges involved the electronic transfer of funds from the Chicago-based labor organization for his receipt of unauthorized expense reimbursements totaling $85,962. The five others are related to this alleged offense. The indictments follow a joint investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards, Office of Inspector General, and Employee Benefits Security Administration.… Read More ➡