Indiana Boss Accused of $47,000 Theft

Robert D. Meyer, ex-secretary-treasurer of United Bhd. of Carpenters Local 1481 in Gary, Ind., was charged Nov. 19 with one count of embezzling $47,346.40 from the local, which is also known as the Great Lakes Reg’l. [DOL 11/19/01]

“[Walter J. ‘Buster’] Browne became the most visible and politically powerful union boss in Broward [Fla.] He loves the image of the dangerous bad boy. He looks and acts like he stepped out of On the Waterfront. But he is a thoroughly modern union boss, charged with using a credit card and a pen–rather than brass knuckles–to violate union trust. . . . [At his arraignment], this political powerhouse was just another guy in a plaid shirt, his belly hanging over his belt, his voice almost a whisper as he answered questions from U.S. Magistrate Barry Seltzer.

Seltzer reminded Browne that he could no longer travel outside southeast Florida while out on $150,000 bail. Browne nodded. Seltzer said Browne must give up his union credit cards. Browne stood mute. The judge said Browne couldn’t own a gun while on bail. ‘I don’t own a gun,’ Browne said. Some tough guy.”

-Buddy Nevins, Columnist, Sun-Sentinel (Ft. Lauderdale), Nov. 3, 2001, commenting on the recent indictment of the Nat’l Fed’n of Public & Private Employees’ boss.