“Guilty, Your Honor”

UAW’s Gary Jones admits to racketeering and embezzlement, joins 14 others

Gary Jones, former president of the United Auto Workers, confessed to racketeering and embezzlement charges Wednesday as part of a federal probe investigating corruption between the longstanding Detroit-based union and Fiat Chrysler. The union, officially known now as the United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers, and its new president are currently hard at work trying to distance themselves from the scandal amidst more recent national crises.

Jones, 63, is the highest-ranking member of the UAW to be convicted as part of the ongoing probe into the misuse of millions of dollars, embezzlement and bribery by union officials. He is the 14th person to plead guilty as part of the case, including 11 officials affiliated with the union and three executives with Fiat Chrysler, according to CNBC. He was charged in March “for his involvement in embezzling more than $1 million of union funds for golf trips, expensive cigars, liquor and other merchandise and luxuries,” CNBC reported. “I apologize to my UAW family for betrayal of their trust and pray they will forgive me,” Jones said during the roughly 40-minute hearing that was conducted via a Zoom video conference due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Jones was elected president in June 2018 to head up the union’s 390,000 active members and more than 600,000 retired members in both the U.S. and Canada—so you could say he lasted two full years if investigation proceedings are included.

The UAW prides itself as one of the more diverse organizations of its kind—and is particularly leaning into that reputation during a time of heightened focus on social justice:

“As impressive as it is, the UAW’s success record at the bargaining table is only part of the story. From our earliest days, the UAW has been a leader in the struggle to secure economic and social justice for all people. The UAW has been actively involved in every civil rights legislative battle since the 1950s, including the campaigns to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the Fair Housing Act, the Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1988 and legislation to prohibit discrimination against women, the elderly and people with disabilities.”

Jones faces up to five years in prison and up to $250,000 in fines.

One Response to ““Guilty, Your Honor””

  1. Only 5 years and a small fine. It is no wonder the illegal activities are repeated over and over .These guys most likely embezzled many times the amount of money they were charged with stealing. So financially still very profitable enterprise.

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