Are UFCW Dues Going to the Mafia?

Recently, two UFCW bosses were indicted on serious charges. Frank Cognetta, the secretary-treasurer of UFCW Local 1D, was charged with racketeering and soliciting and accepting bribes. He is accused of putting millions of dollars’ worth of UFCW funds — from employee benefit, medical insurance, and disability plans — into annuities in exchange for kickbacks. According to Bloomberg BNA, Cognetta’s indictment alleges that he received nearly $500,000 in kickbacks.

Vincent D’Acunto, Jr.,  the secretary-treasurer of UFCW Local 2D, was charged with racketeering and extortion. He’s accused of conspiring to extort annual cash payments from another UFCW officer “by threatening the officer with violence and the loss of the officer’s job.” Prosecutors allege that Cognetta and D’Acunto and their co-defendants were “members and associates of the Genovese Crime Family of La Cosa Nostra… also known as the ‘Mob’ or the ‘Mafia.'”

Altogether, Cognetta was charged with nine counts: one count of racketeering, three counts of wire fraud, three counts of mail fraud, and two counts of bribery. It’s alleged that this long-running conspiracy began in or about 2001. If found guilty on all of these charges, Cognetta could be sentenced to over 120 years in prison. D’Acunto was charged with one count of racketeering and one count of extortion; if convicted on both counts, he could be sentenced to 40 years in prison.




Print Friendly, PDF & Email