Two Union Officers Indicted for Embezzling Over $300,000 in Union Funds
Baltimore, Maryland - A federal grand jury indicted Paul S. Peters, II, age 31, of Dundalk, and Brian Armentrout, age 32, of Baltimore, for embezzling funds from the Waterfront Guard Association Local 1852, I.W.A. (WGA),where they were president and recording secretary, respectively, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein. The indictment was returned on February 5, 2009 and unsealed today.
According to the 18 count indictment, from January 2002 through September 2005, Peters and Armentrout embezzled funds from the union’s pension and welfare plans, as well as from the union operating account, and used the union money for personal expenses and purchases, including vehicles, boarding costs for horses, home improvements, stock transactions and home mortgage payments. The indictment alleges that Peters would transfer funds from the union’s pension and welfare plans to the union operating account. Peters and Armentrout would make cash withdrawals from the union operating account, as well as write checks payable to themselves on the union operating account then cash the checks or deposit the union funds into their personal bank accounts.
Peters faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison for each of seven counts of embezzlement from a labor union, six counts of embezzlement from an employee benefit plan, and conspiracy. Armentrout faces the same sentence on each of four counts of embezzlement from a labor union and conspiracy. Peters had his initial appearance in federal district court in West Virginia this morning.
An indictment is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by indictment is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein thanked the Department of Labor’s Office of Inspector General and Employee Benefits Security Administration for their investigative work and commended Assistant United States Attorney Harry M. Gruber, who is prosecuting the case.