12/21/07

Unions kept OLMS very busy in November

The U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS) today announced its criminal enforcement data for November 2007. During the month, OLMS obtained nine convictions and court orders of restitution totaling $488,670. The bulk of the cases involved the embezzlement of union funds.

OLMS is the federal law enforcement agency responsible for administering most provisions of the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959 (LMRDA). The agency's criminal enforcement program includes investigations of embezzlement from labor organizations, extortionate picketing, deprivation of union members' rights by force or violence, and fraud in union officer elections. The agency's civil program collects and publicly discloses unions' annual financial reports, conducts compliance audits of labor unions and seeks civil remedies for violations of officer election procedures.

"When crimes such as these occur, workers are right to demand that we deliver swift, effective justice. The nine convictions this month are a victory for them," said Deputy Assistant Secretary for Labor-Management Standards Don Todd. "Our work has resulted in convictions of individuals found guilty of wrongdoing against unions, and we are proud of our results in protecting America's union members. We have obtained more than 800 convictions and exceeded 850 indictments since fiscal year 2001. The court ordered restitution in these cases is just about $103 million."

OLMS's public disclosure Web page at http://www.unionreports.gov contains union annual financial reports and additional forms required to be filed under the LMRDA. Other information, including synopses of OLMS enforcement actions, is available on OLMS's home page at http://www.olms.dol.gov.

Editor's Notes: A listing of selected OLMS enforcement actions during November 2007 accompanies this release. An indictment is the method by which a person is charged with criminal activity. As in all criminal cases, each defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Criminal charges and indictments noted in these materials are accusations only.

Selected Enforcement Actions in November 2007

Office of Labor-Management Standards
U.S. Department of Labor

Sentencings

Former Secretary-Treasurer of AFGE Local 3749 Sentenced for Making
False Entry

On November 1, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska, Connie Scarrow, former secretary-treasurer of the American Federation of Government Employees Local 3749, was sentenced to five years probation and ordered to serve six months of home confinement. On August 9, Scarrow had pled guilty to knowingly and willfully making a false entry on the local's Form LM-3 to conceal her misappropriation of union funds. Scarrow previously had made restitution in the amount of $11,000. The sentencing follows an investigation by the OLMS Kansas City Resident Office.

Former Union Vice President Pleads Guilty and Sentenced on Four Counts of Embezzlement

On November 8, in the 4th District of the North Carolina District Courts, Donnell Davis, former vice president of American Federation of Government Employees AFL-CIO, Local 2065, pled guilty to four counts of North Carolina General Statute Section 1490, embezzlement of property received by virtue of office or employment. He was sentenced on November 8 to seven to nine months imprisonment, 36 months probation, and restitution in the amount of $29,120. The sentencing follows an investigation by the OLMS Nashville District Office.

Former Union President Sentenced on One Count of Mail Fraud

On November 14, in the U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Louisiana, Lorraine T. Payton, former president of the National Federation of Federal Employees, International Association of Machinists District 1, VA Council, was sentenced to three years probation including eight months home confinement with electronic monitoring for mail fraud. She was ordered to pay $19,800 in restitution and a $100 assessment. The sentencing follows an investigation by the OLMS New Orleans District Office.

Former Financial Secretary of Steelworkers Local 1358 Sentenced for Embezzling More Than $145,000 in Union Funds

On November 15, in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, Alan Raines, former financial secretary of Steelworkers Local 1358, was sentenced to 24 months in prison and two years of supervised release, ordered to pay a special assessment of $100, and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $145,823.92. Raines previously had paid more than $128,000 in restitution. On July 11, Raines pled guilty to one count of embezzling union funds in the amount of $274,262.38. The sentencing follows an investigation by the OLMS Detroit District Office.

OLMS Investigation Results in Restitution

On November 15, an embezzlement investigation conducted by the OLMS Seattle District Office resulted in the subject entering into the Pre-Trial Diversion program in the U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon. Under the terms of the Pre-Trial Diversion agreement, the subject must complete six months supervised release and make full restitution. Due to the confidential nature of the Pre-Trial Diversion program, details that could identify the subject are not public information.

Former Union Treasurer Sentenced for Embezzling More Than $172,000 in Union Funds

On November 21, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, Kirk A. Tuttle, former treasurer of the Professional Airline Flight Control Association - DELTA, was sentenced to nine months in prison, two years of supervised release and 150 hours of community service, fined $8,000 and ordered to pay a special assessment of $100. Tuttle previously had paid more than $159,000 in restitution. On September 7, Tuttle pled guilty to one count of embezzling union funds in the amount of $172,846. The sentencing follows an investigation by the OLMS Atlanta District Office.

Former Union Treasurer Sentenced for Making False Entry and Willful Concealment of Books and Records

On November 27, in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California, Christina Wabinga, former treasurer of Theatrical Employees Local B-66, was sentenced to12 months probation. Wabinga was fined $2,000 and ordered to pay restitution totaling $3,533 to Theatrical Employees Local B-66. On August 22, Wabinga pled guilty to one count of false statements and representations of fact with knowledge of falsehood and one count of false entry and willful concealment of books and records. The sentencing follows an investigation by the OLMS San Francisco District Office.

Former NALC Local Officer Sentenced for Embezzling More Than $66,000 in Union Funds

On November 28, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, William Pagano, former secretary-treasurer of the National Association of Letter Carriers, Branch 78, was sentenced to six months in prison followed by six months home confinement with electronic monitoring and three years probation. Pagano previously pled guilty to embezzling $66,759 in union funds. He also was ordered to make full restitution and pay a special assessment. The sentencing follows an investigation by the OLMS Cleveland District Office.

Former Union Employee Sentenced for Embezzling More Than $63,000 in Union Funds

On November 29, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Kansas, Kelli Tyrell-Moore, former executive assistant of the Kansas State Nurses Association, was sentenced to eight months of confinement and three years of probation. Tyrell-Moore also was ordered to make restitution in the amount of $63,307. On July 25, Tyrell-Moore pled guilty to one count of embezzling union funds. The sentencing follows an investigation by the OLMS Kansas City Resident Office.

Guilty Pleas

Former Union President Pleads Guilty to Filing False Reports

On November 2, in the U.S. District Court for Connecticut, Timothy C. Ferrucci, former president of Northeast Emergency Services Union, pled guilty to four counts of filing a false report. Ferrucci admitted making false statements on the local's annual Form LM-3 for the years 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004. In each of the annual reports, Ferrucci understated the amount of compensation he directly or indirectly received. Ferrucci's plea agreement requires him to make restitution in the amount of $27,347.67. The plea follows an investigation by the OLMS New Haven Resident Office.

Former Treasurer of Carpenters Local 113 Pleads Guilty to Embezzling More Than $14,000 in Union Funds

On November 14, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Brad Dubray, former treasurer of Carpenters Local 113, pled guilty to embezzling union funds in the amount of $14,548.11. On October 15, DuBray was charged with one count of embezzling union funds in the same amount. The plea follows an investigation by the OLMS Cincinnati District Office.

Criminal Charges and Indictments*

Former Secretary-Treasurer of APWU Branch 715 Charged with Embezzling
Union and Postal Funds

On November 5, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado, Linda Peterson, former secretary-treasurer of American Postal Workers Union Branch 715, was charged with embezzling union funds in the amount of $2,905 and embezzling U.S. Postal Service funds in the amount of $3,600. The charges follow a joint investigation by the OLMS Denver District Office and the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General.

Former Steelworkers Local 1196 Officer Charged with Embezzling Union Funds and Preparing False Records

On November 7, in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania, Deborah Anthony, former financial secretary of Steelworkers Local 1196, was charged with eight counts of embezzling union funds totaling $6,955.18 and one count of preparing false union records. The charges follow an investigation by the OLMS Pittsburgh District Office.

Former Treasurer of AFGE Local 3435 Charged with Theft and Preparing False Records

On November 8, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Michelle Meek, former treasurer of American Federation of Government Employees Local 3435, was charged with one count of theft within a special territorial jurisdiction of the United States totaling $7,278.28 and two counts of making false entries on financial reports. The charges follow a joint investigation by the OLMS Cleveland District Office, the Department of Labor's Office of Inspector General, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development's Office of Inspector General.

Former President of AFGE Local 1417 Charged with Theft and Misapplication of Property

On November 15, in the Circuit Court of the State of Oregon for Umatilla County, Robert Steele, former president of American Federation of Government Employees Local 1417, was charged with theft in the first degree and misapplication of entrusted property. The charges follow an investigation by the OLMS Seattle District Office.

Former Union Officer Charged with Embezzling More Than $145,000 in Union Funds

On November 20, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio, Betty Illig, former secretary-treasurer of Graphic Communications International Union Local 638-S and the Tri-State District Joint Council, was indicted on one count of embezzling union funds totaling $145,675 and one count of making false statements. The indictment follows a joint investigation by the OLMS Cleveland District Office and the Department of Labor's Office of Inspector General.

* An indictment is the method by which a person is charged with criminal activity. As in all criminal cases, each defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Criminal charges and indictments summarized in these materials are accusations only.

(prnewswire.com)

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