It was a family affair.
Three relatives with former leadership positions in Brooklyn's Local 348-s of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union -- Anthony Fazio Sr., Anthony Fazio Jr. and John Fazio Jr. -- were convicted by a Manhattan federal jury after a three week trial for using the union over two decades as a platform for their criminal schemes according to a press release by Department of Justice prosecutors. The Fazios, among other things, regularly extorted cash payments from unionized businesses in exchange for labor peace and looted the union's benefit funds by submitting fraudulent invoices for non-existent goods and services.
According to court papers the FBI uncovered suspected ties between the union and the mob including alleged meetings between John Fazio Jr. and reputed Genovese capo John Barbato as previously reported by Bruce Golding for the New York Post.
A number of recent indictments involving labor racketeering suggests that the Genovese family apparently continues to have pervasive influence throughout assorted unions in New York City. Just last month the feds brought a case charging several suspected Genovese mobsters and union officials for their alleged roles with extortion on construction sites, and last year the feds busted a suspected Genovese crew and a number of ex-International Longshoremen's Association officials for their alleged roles in extorting NY and NJ dockworkers for annual Christmas-time tribute payments known in mob lingo as "Christmases."
In October 2010 a federal jury convicted reputed Genovese associate Joseph Olivieri, the former head of the Wall-Ceiling Association which is NYC's largest trade group for carpentry contractors, on a perjury charge "in a case that showed the mob's grip on construction" as then reported by Brian Kates for the Daily News: "testimony painted Olivieri as the mob's go-to guy in city construction unions." The feds variously indicted Olivieri -- who also was a trustee of the carpenters union benefit funds -- with ex-carpenters union boss Michael Forde and others in August 2009 for their alleged roles in a scheme involving bribes by dirty contractors to union officials in order to avoid obligations under labor agreements.
In announcing last April's labor racketeering bust allegedly involving the Genovese family Special Agent-in-Charge Robert Panella from the U.S. Department of Labor stated that the "arrests reflect our strong commitment to combat the infiltration of unions by organized crime members and associates for their personal enrichment."