More Criminals Inside Unions

One of your favorite topics that I blog about is the embezzlement and corruption that occurs inside unions.  Here are a few more for your enjoyment.

Teachers’ Union Treasurer Sentenced for Theft:  Grace Gaines wrote the checks for Woodhaven Center, a school for autistic students.  She was sentenced to six months of house arrest, five years of probation, and ordered to pay restitution of $17,800 that she stole from the teachers’ union for her own personal use.

Pension Benefit Manager Indicted: A former pension benefit manager was indicted on federal charges of embezzling money.  Harry Keil created false invoices and stole $55,000 while working as the administrative manager of pension and health and welfare funds for the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, District 9.  If convicted, each count carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and fines up to $250,000.

SEIU Officer Charged for Embezzlement:  Chicago-based Byron Hobbs, who also ran on the Union’s national board, billed the Union $9,000 for personal expenses.  Mr. Hobbs was the executive vice president for the SEIU’s 90,000 member Illinois-Indiana healthcare local and was overseeing a St. Louis chapter that the union had placed in trusteeship.

SEIU Cleans House in California:  Tyrone Freeman was ousted after the LA Times disclosed that his 160,000 member local and an affiliated charity paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to small companies owned by his wife and mother-in-law, and spent a similar amount on luxury golf tournaments, expensive restaurants, and a cigar lounge.

SEIU’s Largest Michigan Local Removed from Office:   Tyrone Freeman’s former chief of staff, Rickman Jackson, was removed as head of the SEIU’s largest Michigan local because he allegedly received improper lease payments for his Bell Gardens house.

SEIU’s Local President on Leave for Improper Influence:  Annele Grajeda, president of an SEIU Los Angeles local and president of the SEIU State Council has been on leave for several months after the Union began investigating her for improperly using her influence to keep her ex-boyfriend on the county payroll.

Another Chicago Teamster Official Steps Down Amid Investigation:  Jim Kenney, a new president of Teamsters Local 179 stepped down amid a union investigation into his organization’s finances.  Although details were not given, the Union did say that an investigation into financial improprieties led to Mr. Kenney’s resignation.

Former Union Treasurer Indicted for Embezzlement:  Norman Stefanick, a former Watertown NY Steelworkers Union treasurer was indicted by a federal grand jury for stealing over $25,000.  If convicted, he faces a up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.