New York Times


Ex-Union Head Pleads Guilty in Funds Theft




October 13, 2001


The former president of the union representing municipal clerical employees pleaded guilty yesterday to charges of stealing more than $50,000 in union funds.


Albert A. Diop, 66, of Brooklyn pleaded guilty to second degree grand larceny, admitting that he used a Local 1549 credit card to buy chess sets, cameras, clothing and other personal items, and to pay for hotels for himself.


Mr. Diop was president of Local 1549, which has a membership of 23,000 clerical workers. Under a plea agreement, Justice William Leibovitz of State Supreme Court in Manhattan will sentence Mr. Diop on Nov. 2 to a maximum of 11 years in prison.


Mr. Diop is already serving one and a half to four years for rigging a contract ratification vote. He was convicted in July 2000 of a scheme to defraud for stuffing ballot boxes in 1996 to win acceptance of an unpopular contract with the city.


He was originally charged with misappropriating about $1 million of Local 1549's money and was scheduled for trial in October 2000, but Justice Leibovitz declared him mentally unfit at the time.


Officials of Local 1549's parent union, the 120,000-member District Council 37 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, forced Mr. Diop to resign as 1549's president after he was indicted.

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