School District Fires Ex-Tacoma Boss

The Tacoma School Dist. fired a cafeteria employee who pled guilty to stealing money from a local food service union. Sharon K. Kocha pled guilty last month to first-degree theft for embezzling about $6,000 from the Public School Employees of Wash. while she was president of the union’s Tacoma chapter. Kocha had been a cook at Stewart Middle School until Oct.  1999, when she was arrested and placed unpaid administrative leave.

Pierce County prosecutors charged Kocha with embezzling at least $5,818  by writing checks on the union bank account to herself, her creditors or for cash from 1998 to 1999. On Apr.12, 2000, she entered a type of plea that acknowledged she probably would be found guilty if she went to trial. Pierce County Judge Terry Sebringo sentenced her to pay $6,118 to the union, less any payments already had made. Sebringo also ordered her to serve 30 days in jail but converted it to 240 hours of community service. He also ordered her to pay $810 for court costs. [News Tribune (Tacoma) 5/8/00]

Tax Counts Added for New Jersey Bosses
The two ex-bosses of the N.J. State Policemen’s Benevolent Ass’n, indicted in Nov. for allegedly defrauding the union of as much as $1 million, were charged May 8 with tax violations.

Frank Ginesi was charged with failing to report the proceeds of the alleged fraud for tax years 1993-96. William Saksinsky is charged with the same crimes for 1993-95. If convicted, each faces a maximum sentence of three years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each count (for each tax-year).

According to the earlier 29-counts, Ginesi and Saksinsky committed the fraud using numerous secret bank accounts. They allegedly diverted union dues checks, death benefit insurance premium checks, travel agency checks and checks from a PBA fund raising company. From about 1978 to 1996, Ginesi was president and Saksinsky was vice-president of NJSPBA. [USAO D.N.J., Media Release 5/8/00]