LAWFUEL – The former bookkeeper of the International Longshoremen & Warehouse Union (ILWU) Local 26 was arrested today on federal charges of embezzling union funds.
Rosa Della Porta, 44, of Highland Park, was taken into custody by federal authorities after being indicted last Friday on one count of embezzling union funds. Della Porta is expected to make her initial court appearance this afternoon in United States District Court in Los Angeles.
Della Porta was the office manager and bookkeeper of ILWU Local 26. She was responsible for receiving dues and making bank deposits. After receiving cash from various sources, Della Porta allegedly deposited less cash than the union received and pocketed the balance. Investigators with the Labor Department have concluded that the embezzlement totaled approximately $108,000 in cash.
The indictment alleges that Della Porta embezzled the money from ILWU Local 26 from January 2003 through June 2006, when she was relieved of her bookkeeping duties. The union terminated Della Porta in November 2006.
ILWU Local 26 represents approximately 1,000 members. The members work for 28 industrial companies in the Los Angeles metropolitan area.
The embezzlement charge carries a statutory maximum penalty of five years in federal prison.
An indictment contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
This case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Labor-Management Standards, which enforces federal labor laws that impose financial responsibilities on union officers and employees, who are required to properly account for the receipt and disbursement of membership funds. The investigation was conducted with the cooperation of union officers and staff of ILWU Local 26.
Release No. 08-112