A former United Auto Workers administrative aide was sentenced to prison for her part in an embezzlement scheme where millions of dollars were diverted from a training center to union and automotive executives. This is a story we’ve covered multiple times on this blog, e.g. here and here.
The UAW-Fiat Chrysler National Training Center was used as a conduit to facilitate payments from the auto industry to union and company executives, buying peace from the labor union during contract negotiations. Nancy Johnson, a former UAW administrative assistant, was the seventh individual sentenced in the scheme this year. She faced up to 18 months in prison for her part in redirecting more than $40,000 in training center funds. After pleading guilty, she was sentenced to one year and one day in prison.
Fiat Chrysler funneled money through the Training Center to buy UAW leadership an $8,494 dinner at a Detroit steakhouse, complete with liquor and cigars. Johnson reportedly put some of that on her Training Center credit card. When negotiations were complete, Fiat Chrysler bought union leadership another steakhouse dinner totaling $6,913, all of which Johnson charged to the Training Center. No Fiat Chrysler officials were even present and no training center business was discussed at either meal.
Johnson and other UAW officials also used Training Center charge cards to buy month-long stays at condominiums that included rounds of golf and limousine services in Palm Springs, California.
Matt Austin owns Austin Legal, LLC, a boutique law firm based in Ohio that limits its representation to employers dealing with labor, employment, and OSHA matters. You can reach Matt by calling him at (614) 843-3041 or emailing him at Matt@MattAustinLaborLaw.com.