The United Auto Workers get another black eye.
The U.S. Attorney's Office in Detroit on Monday charged former UAW Vice President Norwood Jewell with conspiracy to violate federal labor laws as part of a four-year FBI investigation into corruption in the union and the auto industry, Robert Snell of The Detroit News reports. He's the highest-ranking former UAW member to be charged in the probe.
Jewell, 61, of Swartz Creek, who headed the union's Fiat Chrysler department, was charged in a criminal information, which indicates he's expected to plead guilty. Snell writes:
The criminal case focuses heavily on how Fiat Chrysler executives bankrolled a life of luxury for Jewell and other UAW officials in Palm Springs, California, with money that was supposed to train blue-collar workers. In all, prosecutors say Jewell and other UAW officials went on a $100,000 spending spree paid for by Fiat Chrysler.
Fiat Chrysler executives let Jewell and other UAW officials spend almost $59,000 at steakhouses in Palm Springs and Detroit, part of a broader effort by auto company officials to keep labor leaders "fat, dumb and happy," according to court records.