Trucking companies named in alleged benefits scam

| 7/11/2002

Two New England-area brothers and their three trucking companies are accused of conspiring with the Teamsters' union president in Boston and others to slip bogus employees into union-funded health care and pension plans, according to a story in the Nashau (NH) Telegraph. The group is not accused of profiting personally from the alleged scheme.

Thomas DiSilva of Nashau, and James DiSilva of Lexington, MA, were indicted in January with Teamsters Local 25 President George Cashman of Revere, MA, the DiSilvas' brother-in-law William Belanger of Winchester, MA, and Local 25 Vice President William Carnes of Melrose, MA.

Three companies managed by the DiSilva brothers and Belanger also are charged in the alleged scheme: DiSilva Transportation Inc. of Somerville, MA, and Hutchinson Industries Inc. and Manfi Leasing of Burlington, MA.

Prosecutors allege that the men put 19 people - including relatives of the DiSilvas - onto the payrolls of the three companies, even though they weren't actually working there, and filed false documentation allowing them to collect benefits, costing the union more than $72,000. Two non-employees were listed on payrolls to make them eligible for pensions, the government alleges.

The charges carry up to a maximum of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The case remains pending at U.S. District Court in Boston. No trial date has been scheduled.