South Carolina AFGE Local President Pleads Guilty

John Sammons was a double-dipper when it came to travel, but at least he can take comfort in being convicted on a single charge. On February 28, Sammons, former president of American Federation of Government Employees Local 1872, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina to one count of theft in excess of $1,000 from the union, which represents about 150 to 200 civilian employees at Shaw Air Force Base. Sammons had been indicted last July on five counts of mail fraud and one count of theft whose sum total was not specified at the time. The actions follow a probe by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards.

Sammons, now 61, an employee of Shaw AFB, was president of AFGE Local 1872 from about 2000 through 2016. Unfortunately, say prosecutors, he often used his position to receive extra reimbursements for trips related to his work for a national union committee known as the Defense Conference. For these events, he submitted expense vouchers to the conference and requested that all checks be made out to him and sent to his home address. These payments, however, were addition to his reimbursements from Local 1872. And he did not repay the local after receiving the Defense Conference reimbursements. The thefts totaled nearly $15,000. A sentencing date has yet to be announced.