Richard D’Antuono saw his union as an open cash register. Now his case is all but closed. On November 27, a federal court in Providence, R.I. announced that D’Antuono, former business manager and financial secretary for Operative Plasterers and Cement Masons International Association Local 40, has agreed to plead guilty to an information count issued on November 21 charging him with two counts of embezzlement totaling between $250,000 and $550,000 from the Cranston-based union and one count of identity theft. The actions follow a probe by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards, Office of Inspector General and Employee Benefits Security Administration. Neither the union nor the defendant’s attorney were available for comment.
According to court documents, D’Antuono, now 42, a resident of Cranston, starting in 2015 and continuing for two years, embezzled funds from both the Local 40 general account and its apprenticeship benefit plan, making out checks to himself well in excess of his salary and stipend. In some instances, he authorized signatories to sign blank checks; in others, he forged their signatures outright. In particular, D’Antuono commingled accounts to facilitate his embezzlement. Eventually, the Department of Labor discovered financial irregularities and launched an investigation. Concluding that he had taken the money, the DOL then referred the case to the Justice Department. D’Antuono has yet to plead guilty. When he does, he faces up to anywhere from two to five years in prison for each charge.