Friday, January 11, 2013

SEIU Corruption Trial: Feds' Subpoena Sparks Drama about SEIU Official's Dual Marriages

Some serious drama is unfolding in the federal courtroom that’s quickly pushing SEIU’s corruption scandal into uncharted territory. How uncharted? Well, check this out.

Federal prosecutors say Tyrone Freeman -- a top SEIU official who was a member of SEIU’s International Executive Board and a close confidant of Andy Stern and Mary Kay Henry -- may have been involved in bigamy. Tasty is not kidding.

The latest development involves Tyrone Freeman’s second wife, Pilar Planells, who last year copped a guilty plea to tax evasion charges connected to $540,000 in so-called “consulting payments” she received from SEIU Local 6434 during SEIU’s wide-ranging crime spree.

Last week, federal prosecutors served a subpoena on Planells to compel her to testify at Freeman’s criminal trial. Planells, with the assistance of a public defender, filed a counter-motion to quash the subpoena by arguing she can’t be forced to testify at Freeman’s trial because she’s married to Freeman.

Not so quick, say federal prosecutors. In a motion that Tasty posted below, prosecutors say Freeman isn’t actually married to Planells. They point out that Freeman was still married to his first wife when, in 2006, he used his SEIU American Express card to pay for an extravagant tropical wedding ceremony with Planells, his executive assistant at SEIU Local 6434! Even after “marrying” Planells in Hawaii in 2006, Freeman stayed married to his first wife for two more years, until 2008.

And there’s more. The feds’ court filings reveal additional salacious details. For example, did Freeman happen to mention to his first wife that he was kinda planning to get married to his secretary? Nope! Here’s what prosecutors say:
Defendant's wife did not learn that defendant had remarried until she received a telephone call from a friend after an article appeared in the Los Angeles Times [about the wedding].
No wonder Freeman felt so comfortable cutting back-room deals with corporate bosses to sell out healthcare workers. Freeman reportedly learned these tricks from SEIU’s Dave Kieffer, who paired up with Freeman and cut multiple secret, sell-out deals with California nursing home companies that literally threw the union’s own members under the bus.

Here’s how the feds argued against lawyers' request to block their subpoena of Planells. Tasty has posted the full document below:
Defendant Tyrone Ricky Freeman is charged in an indictment that alleges, inter alia, that in August 2006, he used his Local 6434 American Express credit card to pay for personal expenses related to his wedding ceremony in Honolulu, Hawaii, all of which were unrelated to any business of Local 6434. At this wedding ceremony, which took place on August 13, 2006, he purportedly married his executive assistant at the Local, Pilar Planells. Defendant Freeman, however, was still married to his first wife at the time of the 2006 wedding... Defendant's wife did not learn that defendant had remarried until she received a telephone call from a friend after an article appeared in the Los Angeles Times. She and defendant had maintained an intimate relationship until the September 2006 separation. She filed for divorce in Tarrant County, Texas in January 2008, well after defendant's August 2006 marriage to [Planells], and the divorce was finalized on June 25, 2008. (pp. 3-4)

[U]nder the laws of the State of Hawaii, where the marriage took place, a bigamous marriage is void from the start. (p. 6)