According to a release from the Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney Halsey B. Frank announced that Ryan Jones, 35, of Bath, Maine was sentenced on Monday in a U.S. District Court in Portland, Maine, by Judge George Z. Singal to 18 months in prison in addition to three years of supervised release for embezzling $280,865 from a labor union during a period when he served as an officer of that union. Jones was also ordered to pay $280,865 in restitution. He pleaded guilty to one count of embezzlement on September 6, 2017.

According to court records, from 2009 until January 2017, the defendant was the Secretary-Treasurer of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, Local Lodge S6, a labor union.  The defendant’s tenure ended when he failed to win re-election.  In January, the newly elected union officials discovered discrepancies with union finances.  The ensuing federal investigation revealed that the defendant made almost 200 unauthorized withdrawals from the union’s bank account, he fabricated monthly bank statements to conceal his withdrawals, he provided the fabricated bank statements to union auditors to deceive them, and he embezzled about $280,865 between May 2012 and November 2016. 

The investigation was conducted by the Bath Police Department, the U.S. Department of Labor, and the FBI. 

Jones said that the money he stole from Local Lodge S6 went to support his drug addiction.

U.S. Attorney Halsey B. Frank said in a statement that court records show that Jones embezzled union funds between May 2012 and November 2016. After losing a re-election bid, union officials discovered financial discrepancies and then confronted him. An investigation found that he made scores of unauthorized withdrawals from the union’s bank account, and also deceived auditors. Jones’ attorney, Richard S. Berne, filed a sentencing memo asking for clemency, claiming that his client is a “very flawed, but very good man, who made a terrible mistake.”
 

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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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