George Spencer, president of Local 1408 of the Intl. Longshoremen Assn. (ILA) will “review” an offer from an Asst. State Attny. that he serve one year in jail and pay $5,000 in investigative costs for witness tampering in a case involving a Local 1408 member.
The FBI says it taped Spencer offering to pay an undercover agent posing as the victim’s boyfriend to persuade her not to testify at the trial of Jerome Williams. Convicted of rape and armed kidnapping in May 2002, Williams was labelled a sexual predator by Circuit Judge Michael Weatherby, who sentenced Williams to life in prison.
Amid publicity over the witness tampering case, Spencer was elected president of the Local last December. But if he accepts the offer, ILA officials say they will recommend his resignation. George and his brother, Charles Spencer, are also facing charges in a civil lawsuit that they made sexual advances and demanded favors for work from at least 12 women. Asst. State Attny. Shannon McGillis said that the state’s offer to forgo a trial was on the table until May 14. [Florida Times-Union, 5/1/03]