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UNITED STATES v. INTERNATIONAL BHD. OF TEAMSTERS

December 8, 1995

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff, -against- INTERNATIONAL BROTHERHOOD OF TEAMSTERS, et al., Defendant. IN RE: APPLICATION XXII OF THE INDEPENDENT REVIEW BOARD


The opinion of the court was delivered by: EDELSTEIN

 EDELSTEIN, District Judge:

 This opinion emanates from the voluntary settlement of an action commenced by plaintiff United States of America against, inter alia, defendants International Brotherhood of Teamsters ("IBT") and the IBT's General Executive Board embodied in the voluntary consent order entered March 14, 1989 ("Consent Decree"). Pursuant to the Rules and Procedures for Operation of the Independent Review Board for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters ("IRB Rules"), P O, the Independent Review Board ("IRB") has made an application to this Court seeking approval of its decision in this matter.

 Application XXII presents for this Court's review the decision of the IRB regarding disciplinary charges brought against Joseph Cammarano, Jr. ("Cammarano"), a former member of IBT Local Union 282, located in Lake Success, New York. These charges are contained in an investigative report issued by the IRB on January 27, 1995. *fn1" In this report, the IRB charged Cammarano as follows:

 
While an IBT member, you brought reproach upon the IBT and violated your membership oath in violation of Article II, Section 2(a) and Article XIX, Section 7(b)(1), (2) and (9) [of the IBT Constitution] to wit:
 
While a member of IBT Local 282, you were a member of organized crime and knowingly associated with members of La Cosa Nostra including but not limited to Salvatore Vitale, Peter Rosa, Michael Cardello and Joseph DeSimone.

 (Independent Review Board, Proposed Charges Against Local 282 Member Joseph A. Cammarano, Jr. 10-11 (January 27, 1995).) The IRB forwarded these charges and its report to the IBT on January 27, 1995.

 At the hearing, the IRB heard testimony from Special Agent Brian Taylor ("Taylor") of the Federal Bureau of Investigation ("FBI"), "an FBI expert with extensive experience in organized crime investigations. . . ." Opinion and Decision of the Independent Review Board, In re: Joseph Cammarano, Jr. 3 (September 15, 1995) ("IRB Opinion and Decision"). The IRB also reviewed Taylor's sworn declaration, which was submitted as an exhibit. (IRB Investigative Report, In re: Joseph Cammarano, Jr., Ex. 3.) Taylor's testimony was based on his experience investigating organized crime in the New York City area and his review of documents and photographs. The IRB found Taylor's testimony and sworn declaration to be credible. IRB Opinion and Decision at 3.

 At the hearing, Taylor testified that Cammarano was a member of the Bonnano Family of La Cosa Nostra ("LCN") in New York and that Cammarano, at all pertinent times, had associated with members of organized crime. Taylor stated that Cammarano's "father and brother both are prohibited from holding Local 282 memberships on the grounds that they were members of organized crime or associated with such members," and that both his father-in-law and his close friend were Bonnano LCN family members. Id. Taylor further testified that Cammarano frequently visited the Grand Avenue social club, an establishment that the FBI considers to be controlled by a member of the Bonnano LCN family, and that Cammarano ate meals at the club with various members of the Bonnano LCN family. Id. at 3-4.

 Following Taylor's testimony, Cammarano appeared and testified at the hearing. Cammarano was represented by counsel, Mr. Albert A. Gaudelli, Esq. ("Gaudelli"), at the time. In his testimony, Cammarano conceded that he knew many individuals who are alleged to be members of organized crime or associated with members of organized crime. IRB Opinion and Decision at 5; (Hearing Transcript, In re: IRB Charges Against Local 282 Member Joseph A. Cammarano, Jr. 111-15, 123-27 (February 24, 1995) ("Tr.").) Cammarano further admitted that he frequently visited the Grand Avenue social club and that he had dined with various individuals alleged to be members of organized crime. IRB Opinion and Decision at 5; (Tr. 126-27, 135). Cammarano also testified about his membership in Local 282 but denied that he knew that local members were involved with organized crime and that there was corruption within the union. (Tr. 141-45.)

 In addition to his hearing testimony, the IRB reviewed and received as an exhibit a sworn declaration given by Cammarano on August 9, 1994. (IRB Investigative Report, In re: Joseph Cammarano, Jr., Ex. 2.) In this declaration, Cammarano recounted his work experience as a member of Local 282. He testified that he had been both a Teamster and a member of Local 282 for ten years. Id. at 3. Cammarano stated that at the time of the declaration, he was a Teamster foreman and received a yearly salary of $ 80,000 for this position. Id. at 7-8. Throughout this testimony, Cammarano provided "only vague descriptions of his work," descriptions that "tended to suggest that [Cammarano's] actual role was consistent of that of the historical function of many Local 282 working Teamster foremen associates as working closely with organized crime." IRB Opinion and Decision at 2.

 At the conclusion of the hearing, the IRB imposed a post-hearing schedule on the hearing participants. The IRB informed the participants that post-hearing submissions would be due fourteen days following the receipt of the hearing transcript. (Tr. 148.)


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