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Union moves to expel former officers caught in corruption probe

James Leggate

The United Auto Workers is preparing to boot eight former officers and staffers implicated in a federal corruption probe, the union announced Friday.

The UAW’s International Executive Board filed charges against former vice presidents Joseph Ashton and Norwood Jewell and former international representatives Edward “Nick” Robinson, Nancy Johnson, Jeffrey Pietrzyk, Michael Grimes, Keith Mickens and Virdell King under an article of the union’s constitution with the goal of expelling them from UAW membership.

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The charges accuse the eight of “serious misconduct in violation of the law and the ethical practices of the UAW constitution,” the union announced.

“Any UAW member who uses their position to break the law or blatantly violates the sacred oath they took to faithfully serve our members will be subject to remove from their post and expulsion from our union,” UAW President Rory Gamble said in a press release.

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Gamble was named UAW president in December after taking over for former union President Gary Jones, who resigned in the midst of the federal probe. Gamble has pledged to rid the union of corruption and add controls to prevent a similar situation from happening again.

“My administration and the entire executive board will continue to hold accountable those who commit criminal conduct or serious violations of our ethical practices code,” Gamble said. “And we will continue to aggressively implement the critical reforms necessary to strengthen our union’s financial controls, oversight and overall accounting system to ensure the type of conduct described in these charges will not reoccur.”

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