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CEFALO v. MOFFETT

August 18, 1971

Angelo J. Cefalo et al., Plaintiffs,
v.
Elwood Moffett et al., Defendants


Parker, D.J.


The opinion of the court was delivered by: PARKER

PARKER, D.J.

 Plaintiffs having moved for a preliminary injunction restraining defendants, pending litigation of this case on the merits, from terminating the existence of Defendant District 50 by dissolution or merger with the United Steelworkers of America, AFL-CIO, and from presenting any plan for such dissolution or merger to the duly elected delegates of the International Fourth Constitutional Convention of District 50 to be held in Washington, D.C., August 23 through 25, 1971, Defendants and Intervenor Steelworkers having filed Oppositions thereto, and the Court having held a hearing on such Motion and Oppositions at which oral testimony and exhibits were offered by the parties and received by the Court, and the Court having before it depositions taken by the parties and affidavits, and having heard argument of counsel, the Court, after due deliberation, upon the entire record makes the following findings of fact and conclusions of law.

 Findings of Fact

 1. Angelo Cefalo and Samuel Vullo, plaintiffs in this case, are members in good standing of District 50, Allied & Technical Workers of the United States and Canada, a labor organization subject to the provisions of the Landrum-Griffin Act, 29 U.S.C. § 401 et seq.

 2. Both plaintiffs complained of the wrongs which they now assert in this litigation to the Union and the Union took no action to redress these wrongs.

 3. These plaintiffs have, therefore, exhausted their intra-Union remedies and this Court has jurisdiction to grant the relief requested pursuant to Section 501(b) of the Labor Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959 (LMRDA), 29 U.S.C. § 501(b) (1964).

 4. In August of 1970, a judgment in the amount of $8,000,000, which had been entered against District 50 in favor of the United Mine Workers, was reversed by the United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit. Immediately thereafter "intensive" negotiations, looking to a merger between District 50 and United Steelworkers of America, resumed. These negotiations had earlier been suspended following the entering of the $8,000,000 judgment against District 50. (Moffett Dep. 34-35).

 5. Agreement in principle that a merger would be effectuated along certain lines was reached in January 1971, and the lawyers for the respective Unions were then brought in to draft up the final agreement. (Moffett Dep. 43-44).

 6. In February 1971, the draft of the agreement was circulated, which was generally similar to the final agreement as executed on April 24, 1971. (Id. 59.) All these negotiations were conducted in secret. (Id. 36, 41-42.)

 7. In early March 1971 the International Executive Board of District 50 approved a Call for a Constitutional Convention to convene on August 23, 1971. Mr. Moffett, Mr. John Badoud, and Mr. Marlin Brennan, the three signatories to the Call knew that this convention would consider and vote on the proposed merger, a fact made clear by the status of the negotiations and Moffett's statements to the International Executive Board on April 24, 1971. (I.E.B. Minutes p. 121).

 8. The convention was called in 1971 rather than 1975 when the next Constitutional Convention would ordinarily have been held because of a stipulation dated March 10, 1971, between the Secretary of Labor and District 50 in settlement of the case of Hodgson v. District 50, Civil Action 2864-70, a suit in which the Secretary of Labor sought to set aside the election of the International Executive Board at the 1970 Convention and Mr. Moffett's election as President following a protest from Moffett's defeated opponent, plaintiff Angelo Cefalo. The stipulation provided that new elections "shall" be held. That suit was brought pursuant to § 482 of the LMRDA which also gives courts authority to preserve the assets of the Union pendente lite. (Exhibit C to Motion for Preliminary Injunction.)

 9. For several years plaintiff Cefalo and defendant Moffett have engaged in a power struggle for leadership of District 50. Since shortly after his loss of the May 1970 election Mr. Cefalo has been employed as an assistant to the President of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, AFL-CIO, which is actively and successfully raiding the membership of District 50.

 10. Mr. Moffett did not tell the Secretary of Labor of his plans to merge the Union out of existence at the proposed convention when the stipulation was entered into or when the Call to the Convention was being written.

 11. On March 15, 1971 the Call to the convention was distributed to District 50 local unions.

 12. In February 1971 at the insistence of the Secretary of Labor, the election of the International Officers which was to precede the convention was delayed until after the convention to enable Mr. Cefalo and five other District 50 members to appeal their pending expulsion to the convention in accordance with Art. XVI of the District 50 Constitution. At the time of its proposal the Labor Department was not aware of the intention to vote on a merger at the Convention. In any event, the justification for this time arrangement was ...


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