Nebraska Manager Embezzled $200,000

The Neb. Teachers Credit Union was declared insolvent Sep. 22 by state banking officials amid allegations that the ex-manager and sole employee, Violet Crosby, embezzled over $200,000 from members. NTCU, based in Lincoln, serves Neb. State Edu. Ass’n teachers across the state. Its assets are about $850,000.

The state Banking Dep’t began investigating in Jul. when NTCU’s treasurer learned that NTCU was not earning as much interest as it should have on a major account. Crosby was fired shortly after the  discrepancy was discovered.

An audit to determine the exact amount of the embezzlement is underway. The FBI and Lincoln police have worked on the investigation, and any prosecution will be handled by the U.S. Atty.’s Office.

The credit union will open under new ownership, and none of the members will lose money, since the accounts were federally insured for up to $100,000 each and there were no accounts over $100,000. [Omaha World-Herald 9/23/99]

Ohio Cop Used Union for Scam
A top cop used a local Police Benevolent Ass’n to embezzle funds. John E. Widdig, the former chief of police for Manchester, Ohio, was sentenced Sep. 13 by U.S. Dist. Judge Herman J. Weber to two years of probation and $2,600 in fines. On May 27, Widdig pled guilty to one count of embezzling funds from programs receiving federal funding, and to one count of making a false statement on a grant application.

U.S. Atty. Sharon Zaley charged that in Dec. 1994, Widdig sold a five-ton cargo truck that Manchester had acquired through the U.S. Dep’t of Defense’s Surplus Property Program for $5,750 and deposited the money into the Manchester Police Benevolent Ass’n bank account, an account to which only Widdig and one other person had access.

Widdig has reimbursed Manchester  $5,750 for the proceeds of the sale of the truck. He faced ten years imprisonment and a fine of up to $250,000 on the embezzlement charge. [USAO Media Release 9/13/99]

Illinois Local Probed for Wrongdoing
Internal union hearings will begin Sep. 27 investigating charges of financial mismanagement of the Int’l Bhd. of Electrical Workers’ Local 21 in Chicago. Jerry O’Connor, an int’l vice president for IBEW’s Dist. 6, said IBEW put Local 21 in trusteeship Sep. 1 after an initial probe of member complaints found that the local was not functioning properly. A transcript of the hearings will be sent to IBEW in Washington, which will decide whether to continue the trusteeship. Local 21 is the IBEW’s fourth-largest local.  No word on any U.S. Atty. or Dep’t of Justice action. [Chi. Trib. 9/17/99]