Former Local Union Vice President, Joseph Whitbeck Indicted for Operating Overtime Kickback Scheme in the Allentown Post Office
PHILADELPHIA (STL.News) Acting United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Joseph Whitbeck, 55, of Tamaqua, PA, was charged by Indictment with wire fraud and honest services wire fraud stemming from his operation of a scheme to defraud fellow union members out of rightfully earned overtime compensation.
The Indictment alleges that the defendant, while serving as the Vice President for the Local 274 branch of the National Association of Letter Carriers in the Lehigh Valley area, operated a kickback scheme involving certain letter carriers at the Allentown Post Office. As the Vice President, Whitbeck filed numerous grievances on behalf of groups of letter carriers, claiming that U.S. Postal Service managers violated overtime rules. The indictment charges that Whitbeck then settled these class-action grievances for total lump sums, without designating the specific individuals to whom overtime grievance payments were owed, so that he could select the payees at a later time.
Meanwhile, according to the Indictment, Whitbeck offered to secure extra overtime grievance payouts for some letter carriers who agreed to kick back a portion directly to him, generally in cash.