Jason Richard, the former secretary-treasurer for United Steelworkers (USW) Local 12-990, was sentenced to six months in prison and two years of supervised released by Judge Salvador Mendoza Jr. of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington for embezzling more than $40,000 from the union. The court also ordered Richard to pay $30,649 in restitution. Richard originally pleaded guilty in December of 2017 after an investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Labor-Management Standards revealed that he had used the union’s funds for his own personal use over a 10-month period. During the investigation, Richard admitted his guilt to investigators and made two restitution payments totaling $9,400. USA v. Richard, Case No. 4:17-CR-06039-SMJ (E.D. Wash. Apr. 16, 2018).
Magistrate Judge Gabriel W. Gorenstein of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York ruled that Michael Forde and John Greaney, two former trustees of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America (UBC), must pay more than $4.97 million in civil damages to four of the UBC’s pension funds for breaching their fiduciary duties to the funds under Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) and violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO). In 2011, Forde and Greaney pleaded guilty to charges of racketeering conduct and racketeering conspiracy in violation of RICO for running a scheme to deprive the pension funds of millions of dollars in employer contributions in exchange for bribes. After Forde and Greaney pleaded guilty, the four funds brought the instant civil suit in the Southern District of New York, seeking damages for losses caused by the trustees’ corrupt conduct. New York City Dist. Council of Carpenters Pension Fund v. Forde, 2018 WL 2455437 (S.D.N.Y. June 1, 2018) (report and recommendation).
Cheryl Angell, the former treasurer of United Steelworkers (USW) Local 2-144, was sentenced to thirteen months in prison and three years of supervised release by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin for embezzling nearly $100,000 from the union during a four-year period. The court also ordered Angell to pay $98,711 in restitution. While Angell’s attorney argued for leniency given her lack of a criminal record, Judge William C. Griesbach rejected that request, concluding that Angell’s 13-month sentence would deter others from engaging in similar conduct. U.S. v. Angell, Case No. 1-18-cr-00008 (E.D. Wisc. June 20, 2018).