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More Charges Filed Against Ironworkers Union Members For Allegedly Damaging Worksites

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File photo. (A Philadelphia police car blocks the driveway of Ironworkers Local 401 headquarters on the day 11 members were indicted.  credit: CBS-3)

File photo. (A Philadelphia police car blocks the driveway of Ironworkers Local 401 headquarters on the day 11 members were indicted. credit: CBS-3)

(Photo by Ed Fischer) Robin Culverwell
Robin Culverwell has been an editor, reporter and anchor for KYW...
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By Robin Culverwell

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - More charges have been filed against members of the Ironworkers Local 401, alleging they damaged work sites where non-union construction workers were hired.

A federal grand jury has returned two additional counts of “extortion which interferes with interstate commerce” against members of Local 401 along with 14 additional crimes in connection with racketeering charges.

Federal Prosecutors say the ten defendants worked as part of a “shadow gang,” which would vandalize buildings under construction where non-union workers were employed, using sledgehammers to damage equipment and beams and in some cases starting fires. Authorities say this was done in an effort to force contractors to hire union workers.

The buildings include elementary schools in Wallingford and Sharon Hill, a firehouse in Eddystone, and an a house of worship in Philadelphia where damage was estimated at $500,000.

Each of the defendants could face significant prison terms if convicted.

 

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