Union Officer to Plead Guilty to Embezzlement, Identity Theft
PROVIDENCE, RI – According to documents filed in U.S. District Court in Providence, Richard D’Antuono, 42, of Cranston, a former business manager and financial secretary for a Rhode Island plasters and cement mason’s union local, will plead guilty to charges that he embezzled between $250,000 and $550,000 in union funds.
According to court documents, it is alleged that for two years beginning in 2015, D’Antuono, the sole full-time officer of the Operative Plasterers and Cement Masons International Association Local 40, embezzled funds from a union operational account and from an apprentice fund, a type of employee benefit plan, used to finance training programs for apprentice plasterers and masons and for the retraining or refresher training of journeymen union members.
It is alleged that as part of the scheme, D’Antuono made checks out to himself substantially in excess of his salary and a stipend to which he was entitled. In some instances, D’Antuono had the authorized signatories sign blank checks, which he later used to embezzle funds from the operational account. In other instances, D’Antuono forged the signature of the authorized signatories on checks. Additionally, it is alleged that D’Antuono embezzled funds from the Apprenticeship Fund by writing checks payable to the Local 40 operation account and then embezzling the funds in the same manner.
Acting United States Attorney Stephen G. Dambruch and Jonathan Russo, District Director, U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Labor-Management Standards, Boston-Buffalo District Office announce the filing of a three-count information charging Richard D’Antuono with embezzlement from a labor organization, embezzlement from an employee benefit plan, and aggravated identity theft.
Embezzlement from a labor organization is punishable by statutory penalties of up to 5 years imprisonment, a fine of $10,000 and a term of supervised release of 3 years. Embezzlement from an employee benefit plan is punishable by statutory penalties of up to 5 years imprisonment, a fine of $250,000, and a term of supervised release of 3 years. Aggravated identity theft is punishable by statutory penalties of mandatory term of two years imprisonment in addition to the sentence imposed on counts on the embezzlement charges.
An information is merely an allegation and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
The case is being prosecuted by John P. McAdams.
The matter was investigated by U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Labor-Management Standards with the assistance of the Office of Inspector General Office of Investigations - Labor Racketeering & Fraud, and the Employee Benefits Security Administration.