Chesterton Tribune



Two Iron Workers Local 395 members indicted

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Two members of Iron Workers Local 395, headquartered in Portage, have been indicted in federal court on three counts of labor-related extortion offenses.

Thomas R. Williamson, 67, of Schererville, and Jeffrey R. Veach, 55, of Portage, were arrested on Thursday and each charged with one count of Hobbs Act extortion conspiracy and two counts of Attempted Hobbs Act extortion.

Williamson and Veach had their initial court appearances and arraignment before U.S. Magistrate Judge John E. Martin for the Northern District of Indiana and were released on $20,000 unsecured bond.

“According to the indictment, Williamson and Veach used threats of violence and actual violence against non-union ironworkers in the course of their extortion plot,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said. “The defendants allegedly sought to extort a labor contract from ‘John Doe No. 1,’ who owned a steelworking company, and a business contract from ‘John Doe No. 2,’ who owned a construction company.”

The indictment was announced in Washington D.C., by Assistant Attorney General Brian Benczkowski for the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; U.S. Attorney Thomas L. Kirsch II for the Northern District of Indiana; Special Agent in Charge James Vanderberg of the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Inspector General’s Chicago Regional Office; and Special Agent in Charge Grant Mendenhall of the FBI’s Indianapolis Field Office.

The case is being investigated by the Department of Labor Office of Inspector General and the FBI with the assistance of the Dyer Indiana Police Department.


Posted 8/17/2018





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