Ohio Boss Gets 3 Months at home for $19,100 Theft

U.S. Dist. Judge David A. Katz (N.D. Ohio, Clinton) sentenced the ex-treasurer of the Lima (Ohio) Mem’l Prof’l Nurses Ass’n, Sharon K. Schmenk, Feb. 1 to three years probation, the first six months to be spent in home confinement. She must wear an ankle monitor, which costs  $4.95 a day. She must pay for the monitor (approximately $891). Katz also ordered the boss to to make full restitution. She pled guilty Oct. 5 to embezzling $19,170 in union funds.  [DOL 2/1/02; USAO N.D. Ohio 2/25/02]

Minnesota Boss Gets Probation for False Entries, Paid $18,700 in Restitution
On Feb. 25, in the U.S. Dist. Court for the Dist. of Minn., Judy Domning, ex-executive director of the Minn. Licensed Practical Nurses Ass’n and ex-executive director of the Technical Employees Ass’n of Minn., was convicted of making a false statement by making false entries in union records. She was sentenced to two years probation and barred from employment by unions “for life.” She had pled guilty on Aug. 24 and had previously made restitution of $18,772.

The sentence was a downward departure for her substantial assistance in the prosecution of union consultant, Elliot M. Cohn of Coral Springs, Fla. who had pled guilty to mail fraud on Feb. 8, 2001 before U.S. Dist. Judge Michael J. Davis (D. Minn., Clinton). Cohn, president of a labor negotiating firm, admitted to bilking the two unions out of almost $25,000 in fraudulent expenses. For example, Cohn said that from 1996-98, he billed $22,000 in phony airfare expenses to the MLPNA and also manipulated the compensation he drew from the TEAM. He paid $106,476 in restitution to the two unions during the 2001 hearing. [DOL 2/25/02; Star Trib. (Minneapolis) 3/9/01]

Syracuse Boss Pleads Guilty to Falsification Charge
Michael G. Brown, secretary-treasurer of United Transp. Union Local 1007 in Syracuse, N.Y., pled guilty Feb. 13 before U.S. Magis. Judge Gary J. Sharpe (N.D.N.Y.) to making false entries in union records to conceal theft. A one-count information was brought on Feb. 7 and alleged that the crimes occurred from Jan. 1999 to June 2001. According to the plea agreement, Brown wrote unauthorized union checks to himself for alleged reimbursed Local Committee of Adjustment (LCA) expenses which he did not record in the local’s LCA ledger. He confessed that the funds belonged to the local and that he used them for his own personal expenses. The amount of funds taken was not disclosed, but Brown must make full restitution under the terms of the plea agreement. There was no reason given for why a union embezzlement charge was not brought. Sentencing is tentatively scheduled for Mar. 20. [USAO N.D.N.Y. 2/22/02; DOL 2/13/02]

Two Bosses Admit False Entries; Ordered to Make $4,800 in Restitution
On Jan. 24, U.S. Magis. Judge Harwell G. Davis, III (N.D. Ala.), sentenced Roy Summerlin, ex-treasurer of Guards Independent Reg’l Council 10, to three years supervised probation and ordered him to make restitution of $1,212. Davis also sentenced Tom T. Hall, ex-vice-president of Reg’l Council 10, to three years supervised probation and ordered him to make restitution of $3,636.95. The two amounts reportedly equate to full restitution. Both bosses were charged on Nov. 29 with making false entries in required union records, and both pled guilty on Jan. 22. According to the U.S. Atty’s Office for the N. Dist. of Ala., the false records charge, a misdemeanor, was brought instead of a union embezzlement charge because it was more expedient. Reg’l Council 10 is based in Nashville. [DOL 1/24/02; USAO N.D. Ala. 2/25/02]

Mississippi Boss Accused of Failing to Maintain Union Records
On Jan. 28, 2002, in U.S. Dist. Court for the N. Dist. of Miss., Richard S. Smith, ex-president of Int’l Union of Electronic Workers Local 770 in Columbus, Miss., was charged in a one-count information with failure to maintain union records. [DOL 1/28/02]

Indicted Boston Teamster Released
A Boston-area Teamster with ties to reputed mobster James J. “Whitey” Bulger was freed on house arrest Feb. 21 after his daughter pledged her home as $100,000 surety.  John J. “Mick” Murray was released on an electronic monitoring bracelet to his daughter’s custody and ordered not to leave the house except for court appearances.  Murray, a Int’l Bhd. of Teamsters Local 25 member, was charged in with shaking down a bookie as well as planning an extortion of indicted Local 25 boss George W. Cashman for favored treatment on the local’s movie crew. Both Murray and Cashman were indicted on charges of trying to defraud the union’s health and pension funds. [Boston Herald 2/22/02]