Ex-Union President in Chi. Area Pleads Guilty to Mail & Credit Card Theft

A frmr. postal union president and his wife pled guilty Aug. 21 in the U.S. Dist. Ct. in Chicago to embezzling credit cards through the mail facilities where they worked.

Paul Shyongpan was President of American Postal Workers Union (APWU) Local 4545 when, in Nov. 1998, he began opening mailed credit card offers, removed the cards, and forged signatures on them, while his wife did the same at a different post office, acc. to the plea agreement. Until May 2001, Shyongpan and his wife purchased major home appliances, electronic and stereo equipment, video games, clothes, gift certificates and gift cards worth at least $70,094 using the stolen cards.

After an investigation, postal authorities fired Shyongpan in May 2001 and escorted him from the Arlington Heights office where he worked as a sorter. According to post office manager Jim Wizniak, Shyongpan had been the local president for at least five years. He and his wife’s guilty pleas came just six days after their indictment. They will be sentenced on Nov. 21. They are required to make full restitution of the embezzled credit card funds. They also face a potential of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. [U.S.A.O. N.Dist.  E. Div. IL,  Chicago Tribune 8/16/02]