Wednesday, January 9, 2013

SEIU's Anna Burger on Witness List? Report from Tyrone Freeman's Trial

Will Anna Burger, former Secretary-Treasurer of SEIU and head of Change to Win, take the stand at Tyrone Freeman’s trial? It’s possible, according to jury questionnaires circulated during the first day of Freeman’s trial.

Most of the trial’s first day was taken up by jury selection, says a reader who attended the trial yesterday. That’s how the names of Anna Burger and Rickman Jackson emerged.

Questionnaires were given to prospective jurors, which included this question:

The following individuals may appear as witnesses in this case, either in person or through videotapes or recorded testimony. Are you related or personally acquainted with any of these individuals?

The questionnaire then identified more than 50 people, including Anna Burger, Rickman Jackson, Amanda Figueroa (Secretary-Treasurer of SEIU Local 6434), Pilar Planells (Tyrone’s wife), Carmen Planells (Tyrone’s mother-in-law), Nicole Ward (former Political Director for Local 6434 and the Secretary of one of Freeman’s corrupt non-profit corporations), Alicia Carrera (the Finance Director at 6434), and many others.

Tasty would love to see Rickman Jackson take the stand. Jackson, who served as Freeman’s right-hand man, was neck-deep in SEIU’s multiple corruption scandals. After he was outed by the Los Angeles Times for stealing more than $30,000 from SEIU’s members, SEIU’s top officials were forced to remove Jackson as the president of SEIU Healthcare Michigan. Then, Mary Kay Henry famously gave the disgraced “Rickmaster” a six-figure job inside the Purple Palace. Last year, SEIU paid Rickman $140,000, according to government records. Talk about a soft landing for corrupt SEIU officials!

Back to the trial. Other questions on the jury questionnaire included these:

Do you recall seeing, reading or hearing from any source about alleged misspending involving a homecare and nursing home workers union in southern California?

Are you familiar with the Service Employees International Union, which is sometimes referred to as the SEIU? If yes: What do you know about the SEIU? Do you have a strong positive or negative opinion of the SEIU? If so, why?

Hmm… Tasty bets that workers at Kaiser Permanente might be willing to offer a few choice opinions on that question!

Another reader kindly forwarded some court documents related to the trial. Federal prosecutors indicate they expect the trial to last three weeks and they plan to call approximately 50 witnesses.

Here’s a 53-page document from prosecutors that identifies approximately 270 exhibits that they may introduce during the trial. These exhibits include a memo from Anna Burger, meeting minutes from SEIU Local 6434’s Executive Board, phone records tracking a call between Tyrone Freeman and Rickman Jackson while Freeman was in Hawaii, records and photos of Tyrone Freeman’s Land Rover, consulting agreements related to some of Freeman’s extra-curricular business deals, bank records, cashed checks, IRS documents, home loan records, etc. Here's the document: