|By Bob Weaver|
Grantsville resident Harold "Dick" Ullum, 58, a former vice president and West Virginia district manager for the Mid-Atlantic Regional Council of Carpenters and chairman of the Chemical Valley Pension Fund, was sentenced this week in federal court for contributing to a pension fund on his brother's behalf.
A press release from the court said by
spreading false contributions over six months, Ullum increased the length of his brother's service and would have triggered his brother's ability to retire early.
U.S. District Judge Robert C. Chambers sentenced Ullum to five years on probation, the first six months to be spent on home confinement. He also fined Ullum $20,000.
Ullum's attorney George J. Cosenza, indicated Ullum "took the fall" for other's actions, with Ullum pleading guilty for his part in the transaction.
Ullum reimbursed the contractor for the $3,750 "employer's contribution" to the Chemical Valley Pension Fund, plus the $1,072.28 fine for submitting the "employer's contribution" late, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney.
Ullum said "I didn't take anybody's money."
The monies paid on behalf of Tom Ullum was not union or contractor funds, but was Ullum's own money.
There was no restitution ordered as no money losses were incurred.
Ullum's defense was partly based on information that such acts or practices had previously been done within the union circle.
The transaction was made through Pioneer Pipe of Marietta Ohio, and its' CEO David Archer, according to court records.
Ullum said, "I must impress that Dave Archer of Pioneer Pipe was never threatened or promised anything. He made the contribution as a friend, stating he had done it before."