Former Union Official Pleads Guilty to Embezzling More Than $190,000 in Funds
Defendant Spent Thousands on Hotel Stays, Clothing and Other Personal Expenses
JC Stamps, a former union official, pleaded guilty today to embezzling more than $190,000 from two labor organizations he founded and an employee benefit plan.
Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. for the District of Columbia andSpecial Agent in Charge Bill Jones of the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Inspector General - Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigations Washington Region made the announcement.
Stamps, 67, of Upper Marlboro, Maryland, pleaded guilty to one count of theft from an employee benefit plan. The Honorable Chief Judge Richard W. Roberts of the District Court for the District of Columbia scheduled sentencing for Sept. 17, 2014. Stamps has also agreed to pay $194,611 in restitution and is subject to a forfeiture money judgment in the amount of $84,745.
Stamps, a retired detective from the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD), founded two labor organizations based in Washington, D.C.: the National Union of Protective Services Associations, which represented private security guards, and the National Union of Law Enforcement Associations, which represented police officers. In addition, he founded a security guard firm, Stamps Associates, which also was based in Washington, D.C.
According to court documents, between 2004 and 2008, Stamps devised a scheme to defraud and embezzle money in several ways from the unions and the National Union of Protective Services and Employers Health and Welfare Fund (Health and Welfare Fund), an employee benefit plan for which Stamps was a trustee.
In 2007 and 2008, for example, Stamps used money from the Health and Welfare Fund’s bank account to pay American Express for a total of $48,541 in credit card charges for personal purchases and union expenses. None of these charges were related to the administration and operation of the Health and Welfare Fund. Instead, they paid for personal expenses, such as hotel stays, furniture, men’s fragrances, clothing, other retail purchases and online services, and for union expenses, including hotel rental charges (for a holiday party) and automobile rentals.
Also, according to court documents, from 2006 to 2008, Stamps caused the withdrawal of $36,203 from the Health and Welfare Fund’s bank account to pay an attorney for legal expenses incurred by the unions – and not for the fund’s intended purpose.
In addition to the theft and embezzlement from the Health and Welfare Fund, Stamps stole and embezzled at least $109,866 from the unions from 2004 to 2008. According to court documents, more than half of this money was used to cover debts of Stamps Associates, Stamps’ security guard company. Other money was used for personal expenses and fraudulent salary payments for Stamps’ close personal friend, who is identified as “Person A” in court documents. “Person A” was nominally the sole owner of Stamps Associates, although Stamps controlled the company.
The case was investigated by the Department of Labor’s Office of Inspector General and Office of Labor Management Standards and Employee Benefits Security Administration. The case was prosecuted by Trial Attorney Kelly Pearson of the Criminal Division’s Organized Crime and Gang Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Ellen Chubin Epstein of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.