Montana Painters Local Secretary Pleads Guilty to Embezzlement

PaintersFor almost two and a half years, Tammy Smith used her union as a cash dispensary. She now wishes she hadn’t. On February 17, Smith, former secretary of International Union of Painters and Allied Trades Local 1922 in Billings, Montana, pleaded guilty in federal court to embezzling more than $11,000. Smith, 40, a resident of Billings, began working for the local in 2002. According to federal prosecutors from May 2004 until December 2006 Smith diverted dues payments into a personal bank account and wrote union checks to herself or to cash. At her May 19 sentencing, she faces a maximum five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.