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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Missouri

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Former President Pleads Guilty to Embezzling from Union

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that the former president of the union representing Jackson County Department of Corrections employees pleaded guilty in federal court today to a wire fraud scheme in which he embezzled more than $7,000 from the union local.

 

Lowell Wreh, 46, of Raytown, Mo., waived his right to a grand jury and pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Dean Whipple to an information that charges him with one count of wire fraud.

 

Wreh was the president of American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local 1707 from July 2013 until he was suspended in April 2014, and officially dismissed on Aug. 11, 2014. Prior to that, Wreh had been the acting president of Local 1707 since Oct. 20, 2012. AFSCME Local 1707 is a labor organization in Kansas City, Mo., whose members are employed at the Jackson County Department of Corrections.

 

By pleading guilty today, Wreh admitted that he issued $7,642 in checks from the Local 1707 bank account to himself and others for his own benefit and personal use from January 2013 through Feb. 28, 2014.

 

Under the terms of today’s plea agreement, Wreh must pay restitution to Local 1707 for the total amount of the loss.

 

Under federal statutes, Wreh is subject to a sentence of up to 20 years in federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $250,000. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.

 

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul S. Becker. It was investigated by the U.S. Department of Labor - Office of Labor-Management Standards.

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Updated January 20, 2016