Hollywood’s Int’l. Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 45 allegedly had over $63,000 embezzled from it by business manager James E. Jackson. He was indicted Aug. 14 on 46 counts in U.S. District Court. According to court records, Jackson used IBEW’s credit card for unauthorized non-union purposes such as Caribbean cruise tickets, airline and hotel expenditures for family and friends, jewelry and a $3,200 fur coat. IBEW also paid his unauthorized auto allowances, expenses and insurance and paid 4 years of his adult daughter’s health insurance. [City News Service 8/14/98]
Boss Pleads Guilty to $40K Theft
Utility Workers of America Local 537 Secretary-Treasurer William S. George pled guilty Jul. 30 to 6 counts of embezzlement. The plea came after the Pittsburgh union boss was indicted Apr. 22 in U.S. District Court for stealing over $40,000 of union members’ funds. According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, George used several schemes, including fraudulent reimbursements for meals, postal costs and lost wages. The indictment alleged he had UWA pay for personal cellular phone and florist bills. He also used UWA’s credit card to pay for other personal expenses. George faces 5 years in prison and $1,500,000 in fines.
Ousted President Sentenced to 4 years
Frederick Devine, the ousted president of the NY City District Council of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters, was sent to prison Aug. 17 for up to 4 years for using union dues to fund a “lavish lifestyle.” The union boss squandered $175,000 in union funds on golf trips, car rentals and expensive dinners. The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office said Devine took union bosses and his family to Florida for weeks around the annual 5-day AFL-CIO winter conferences in Miami. He splurged on luxury hotels and sometimes treated his wife and his girlfriend to the same trip. Devine charged the junkets to UBC’s operating fund. [NY Post 8/18/98]
Member Beats Union on Appeal
The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Aug. 19 that a UBC member can continue a lawsuit charging UBC with unlawfully influencing his firing and removing him as a shop steward in retaliation for criticism of union bosses. The ruling reversed a lower court dismissal of Peter Maddalone’s charges against UBC Local 17 and UBC NY City District Council. In Jan. 1995, Maddalone, a former Local 17 vice-president, demonstrated with 50 other members in front of UBC HQ. The same day business manager Enrico Ruotolo, told him that district council President Frederick Devine wanted Maddalone and the others “ordered off the job.” The next day, Maddalone was notified that he was no longer shop steward and given his final paycheck. [BNA Daily Labor Report 8/20/98]