2017-08-11 / Front Page

Ex-BIW union official indicted

Prosecutors: $280,000 taken from Local S6
Times Record Staff


A SHIPYARD WORKER walks to his car at the end of the workday at Bath Iron Works in Bath in this January photo. 
AP FILE PHOTO / ROBERT F. BUKATY A SHIPYARD WORKER walks to his car at the end of the workday at Bath Iron Works in Bath in this January photo. AP FILE PHOTO / ROBERT F. BUKATY BATH

A former official from Bath Iron Works’ largest union was indicted on Wednesday in U.S. District Court for embezzlement.

Ryan Jones, 34, is alleged to have stolen $280,000 while serving as the secretary treasurer of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers Local Lodge S6 from May 2012 to November 2016. He’s charged with embezzlement, a Class C felony that carries a possible sentence of up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Local S6 President Mike Keenan directed questions about the indictment and the investigation to IAM.

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers says it has barred Jones from holding office with the union. The union also says it has filed a claim with a bonding company and expects restitution to be paid back to its members.

“The IAM Grand Lodge discovered the missing funds that are involved in this case and promptly conducted an internal investigation in accordance with our union’s constitution and the law,” stated IAM in a press release. “The union found that the former officer misappropriated these funds and barred him from holding union office. The union then on its own initiative informed the Department of Labor of this theft and turned over all documents to the DOL, which resulted in this indictment. The IAM investigation concluded that no other current or past officers were involved in the loss.

“The union has filed a claim with its bonding company and expects full restitution to be paid back to the members of IAM Local S6,” that statement continues. “The IAM has and will continue to cooperate with authorities.”

Published reports have listed Jones as living in Biddeford, however, a statement issued by acting U.S. Attorney Richard W. Murphy indicated Jones is a Bath resident.

A phone call and email to Jones from the Associated Press were not immediately returned.

IAM began investigating allegations of missing funds in March.

In April, IAM spokesman Jonathan Battaglia told The Times Record that “any allegation of misuse of union funds is treated seriously by this union, and deserves thorough examination.”

As of 2015, Local S6 represented 3,500 production workers out of a total 6,000 BIW workers.

The investigation was conducted by the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Labor-Management Standards and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Murphy’s office notes that “an indictment is merely an accusation, and a defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty in a court of law.”

TIMES RECORD STAFF Nathan Strout and Juliette Laaka and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

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