Ralphs indicted over acts in strike

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORERose Parade grand marshal Rita Moreno talks New Year’s Day outfit and ‘West Side Story’ remake160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! A federal grand jury indicted Ralphs Grocery Co. on Thursday on charges that it hired hundreds of workers under false names during the crippling 139-day strike in 2003-04. Federal prosecutors said the chain knowingly rehired key employees who used false names and Social Security numbers, then obstructed the two-year investigation that led to the 106-page indictment. “The company’s actions constitute intentional identity fraud on a large scale by a major company,” said David F. Butler of the Social Security Administration’s Office of Inspector General. While the case is rooted in labor laws restricting “selective lockouts,” the 53-count indictment focuses on Ralphs’ conduct during and after the largest grocery strike in U.S. history. The charges include identity fraud, money laundering and obstruction of justice. If convicted, the company could be fined more than $100 million, plus back pay and other restitution. Ralphs’ parent company, Cincinnati-based Kroger Co., acknowledged some improper hiring but said such conduct was limited to low-level managers who have since been disciplined. “We strongly dispute the claim that the behavior of some store managers reflected a corporate plan devised to further the company’s position during the prolonged labor negotiations,” Paul Heldman, Kroger’s senior vice president, said in a statement. But the top federal prosecutor in Los Angeles countered that investigators found evidence high-level company officials were involved. “It appears this was much more widespread on a much more organized basis,” U.S. Attorney Debra Wong Yang said at a news conference. “There was a tacit acknowledgment this was going on.” Ralphs noted that the National Labor Relations Board investigated similar allegations and dismissed the claims. Thursday’s indictment, however, accuses the company of making false statements to the labor board. The indictment also accuses the company of attempting to obstruct the grand jury investigation, which began in January 2004, by concealing documents. While the indictment names only Ralphs as a defendant, and not its corporate parent, Kroger, or any individuals, prosecutors said their investigation is ongoing and more charges are possible. The indictment bolsters accusations made by unions during the 139-day strike and lockout that affected nearly 70,000 workers across Southern California. “We’ve been vindicated,” said Rick Icaza, president of United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 770. “We felt from the very start they were illegally hiring these people back.” Workers at Vons went on strike in October 2003, and Ralphs and Albertsons employees were locked out hours later as the industry united. The companies used temporary replacement workers to keep most stores open, but suffered some $2 billion in losses. Unions unexpectedly stopped picketing Ralphs stores in late October, increasing the chain’s business and creating a need for reliable workers, according to the indictment. Ralphs proceeded to recruit locked-out employees with needed skills to return as replacement workers, the indictment said. To conceal its actions, the company hired the workers under fictitious or other peoples’ names and Social Security numbers, the indictment said. Ralphs then allegedly filed false government tax and employment forms and benefits records and cashed payroll checks with the incorrect names. Prosecutors say nearly 1,000 workers were re-hired under such circumstances, while Ralphs put the number at closer to 200. The company allegedly placed the employees at far-flung locations and moved them around so they would not be recognized. U.S. Attorney Yang contrasted Ralphs’ actions with those of Vons and Albertsons, which she said developed “clear-cut policies” prohibiting bringing back locked out workers as temporary labor. Ralphs senior management adopted a looser policy, the indictment said, and encouraged such hiring when talking to local managers. The improper hiring strengthened Ralphs financially and helped it survive the lengthy lockout while the unions saw their resources drained, prosecutors said. Ralphs later disclosed that it paid Albertsons and Vons’ parent company about $147 million as part of a secret agreement the firms entered into in response to the strike. That profit-sharing deal prompted California’s Attorney General to sue the companies for anti-trust violations in a separate case that still is pending. dan.laidman@dailynews.com (213) 978-0390last_img read more

Obama To Hold “Fireside Hangout” On State of the Union Address

first_imgRelated Posts nick statt Tags:#Barack Obama#Google#Hangout 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s radio series of 30 “fireside chats” was a key way to connect the presidency to homes across the nation in 1933 and 1934. More than 75 years later, President Obama is using Google+ to “Hangout” with his constituents. In his ongoing series paying respect to the New Deal broker, Obama’s “Fireside Hangout” starts Thursday at 4:50pm ET (1:50pm PT). The President will answer questions from Americans nationwide concerning his fourth State of the Union address, which took place Monday night.Obviously no stranger to the Internet, Obama has a history of digital prowess and social media savvy. He knows how to captizlize on a viral meme, can overload Reddit with an AMA, and has long trounced his political opponents in Twitter outreach (even his best fake Twitter account has an unreasonably high number of followers).To be sure, the President’s culturally attuned staff is helping him every step of the way. After all, it was unprecedented  social tools and data crunching that helped him secure his second term.So if you have something you want to say about the President’s State of the Union address, or just want to watch the dialogue in real time, be sure to jump in the Hangout this afternoon. You can also see it at http://youtube.com/whitehouseand http://wh.gov. As of publication time, the number of confirmed attenddess of the virtual Q&A is nearing 24,000 Google users, and that number is likely to keep climbing as the kickoff time nears.center_img A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostinglast_img read more

a month agoTottenham see Southgate as top replacement for Pochettino

first_imgTottenham see Southgate as top replacement for Pochettinoby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveTottenham see England boss Gareth Southgate as their top replacement for Mauricio Pochettino if the Argentine quits the club.Spurs chiefs believe Southgate’s relationship with the club’s England stars would make him the ideal successor to Pochettino, who increasingly looks as though he is in his last season at Tottenham, says the Mirror.Pochettino said before last season’s Champions League final that he could might leave if Tottenham lifted the European Cup – as it would have been the culmination of a five-year project.And speculation Real Madrid will come in for him refuses to go away, with Bernabeu boss Zinedine Zidane already feeling the pressure after returning to the La Liga giants.Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Harry Winks, Danny Rose and Eric Dier have all made huge strides with England under Southgate’s tutelage.And that made him the perfect candidate when Pochettino’s comments in the lead-up to the Champions League final forced Spurs chairman Daniel Levy to consider potential replacements. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

GreatWest Lifeco reports lower Q3 profit due to hurricanerelated losses

first_imgWINNIPEG – Great-West Lifeco Inc. reported a drop in its third-quarter profit compared with a year ago as it was hit by costs related to hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.The insurance company says it earned $581 million or 59 cents per share for the quarter ended Sept. 30 compared with a profit of $674 million or 68 cents per share a year ago.Great-West (TSX:GWO), through its subsidiary London Reinsurance Group Inc., offers property catastrophe coverage to reinsurance companies.It says the most recent quarter’s results included losses related to estimated claims resulting from the hurricanes totalling $175 million after taxes.However, it noted that the loss estimate may change as additional information becomes available.Excluding the hit, the company says it earned $756 million for the quarter, up $82 million from a year ago, primarily due to higher fee income and lower expenses.last_img read more

Stunning ceramics make a Pit Stop at Peace Gallery North for the

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Prince George artists Leanna Carlson and Karin Heathman made a pit stop with their exhibit “Road Trip” at the Peace Gallery North this past Friday.The exhibition will be running until March 31st at the gallery, featuring both of the artists’ ceramic work. The show features nearly a fifty-fifty split of both Carlson’s and Heathman’s works. Although both artists have vastly different styles, they both say that the theme of road trips suits the combination.Heathman said that when the pair were discussing the possible show, they decided on the theme of a road trip as it gave them a broad subject to work within. “Often when you are on a road trip, you might be going to Thanksgiving dinner, the beach or maybe something else! Road trips take you anywhere and gave us endless possibilities as artists”.Gallery Coordinator Catherine Ruddell said she’s excited to have the exhibit in the gallery for the month. Although Ruddell has only been with the gallery since January, she has enjoyed returning to the Peace Region and working in the local community space.“although the gallery is booked at a minimum one and a half to two years ahead of schedule, I have truly enjoyed getting to know the artists that are currently booked and what they plan to bring.”Carlson, who has been practising her ceramic work for over 26 years, said regardless of her experience, pre-show pressure always kicks in.“I knew coming into this show that I had nearly enough pieces built up, but as the show approached my artist’s brain kicked in. So I made multiple pieces for the show specifically to push my artistic envelope further.”The opening night of the Road Trip exhibit was Friday from 7 pm to 9 pm and featured live music. The exhibit will be available for viewing at Peace Gallery North until March 31st.last_img read more

Truck identified in break and enter has been located

first_imgIn the photo, the man is seen wearing a black jacket with a hood over his head and is seen with a dark coloured GMC or Chevy pick-up truck.Police say the investigation is on-going and no further details are available at this time.If you can identify the man in the photo, you are being asked to call the Fort St. John RCMP at 250-787-8100 or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.Thursday, September 5th, 2019, RCMP put out a tweet on twitter looking for the owner of a maroon coloured car thought to be connected to the break and enter yet the vehicle was at the wrong address.The tweet shares, thank you all who sent this out to everyone you know. We received a call from a young lady who claims to own this vehicle. Appears to be a case of wrong address but we will be following up. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The RCMP have updated its Twitter account to say the pick-up truck associated with a recent break and enter has been located.The Fort St. John RCMP’s tweet shares, this truck has been located late yesterday. Our forensic people will be examining it today for possible evidence. Still need to identify this guy though.last_img read more

RBI buys $5 bn through forex swap auction

first_imgMumbai: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Tuesday bought $5 billion through long-term forex swap auction in a bid to ease liquidity ahead of elections. RBI successfully concluded the forex swap auction, buying the targeted $5 billion as part of the long term dollar/rupee swap with a three-year tenor, it said in a statement. In turn, Rs 34,561 crore was infused into the Indian banking system. The RBI said it received $16.31 billion in bids for the auction for which the cut-off was set at 776 paise. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalThe central bank accepted $5.02 billion of dollars tendered. This formed part of RBI’s announcement earlier this month that it would buy dollars from banks for three years and offer them rupees in return. The swap will bulk up India’s foreign exchange reserves while injecting liquidity into the financial system to ease a cash crunch typically seen before the beginning of a financial year. It is meant to give RBI greater flexibility in managing banking system cash while helping soak up any potential large dollar inflows, such as from the Rs 42,000 crore purchase of Essar Steel by ArcelorMittal which could make the rupee rise sharply. India’s new fiscal year begins on April 1. The central bank has bought Rs 3 lakh crore of bonds this fiscal to support the market at a time when a record $100 billion borrowing plan of the government had cooled demand for debt.last_img read more

Rep Lucido announces fall office hours

first_img State Rep. Peter J. Lucido today announced upcoming fall office hours for residents and families of the 36th District, which includes the townships of Shelby, Washington, Bruce and the Village of Romeo.“My job as state representative for the 36th District involves bringing the concerns and ideas from local residents and families with me to Lansing,” said Rep. Lucido, a Republican from Shelby Township. “Having office hours allows me to hear from constituents so I can better represent their needs at the Capitol.”Fall office hours will be held at the following times and locations:Monday, Sept. 28Washington Township Senior Center57880 Van Dyke in Washington9-10:30 a.m.Monday, Oct. 26Romeo Senior Center361 Morton St. in Romeo9-10:30 a.m.Monday, Nov. 30Washington Township Senior Center57880 Van Dyke in Washington9-10:30 a.m.No appointment is necessary and there is no cost to attend. More office hours will be announced throughout the fall.Rep. Lucido represents the families and residents of the 36th District, serving the townships of Shelby, Washington, Bruce and the Village of Romeo. Categories: Lucido News 22Sep Rep. Lucido announces fall office hourslast_img read more

The BBC has launched its iPlayer catchup service

first_imgThe BBC has launched its iPlayer catch-up service for Xbox One consoles in the UK and has extended the offline-viewing window for content watched on mobile devices. Viewers accessing the catch-up service from mobiles, tablets as well as computers will now be able to watch downloaded shows offline for a period of 30, instead of seven days.The update comes after the BBC extended the on-demand catch-up window for streamed TV and radio programmes from the iPlayer from seven to 30 days in October.“TV is undoubtedly king at Christmas – and the arrival of BBC iPlayer on Xbox One gives viewers even more choice on how they watch. 30 day downloads arrives just in time for those unwrapping new devices, perfect for catching up on the bumper Christmas schedule,” said head of BBC iPlayer, Dan Taylor-Watt.Victoria Jaye, head of TV content for BBC iPlayer added: “With a huge one in four requests now coming from TV sets, new iPlayer’s popularity is going beyond solo, small screen viewing – it’s also the place to gather round and recreate the magic of shared viewing on BBC One and Two, but at a time that suits your family.”The BBC said that the iPlayer is now optimised for more than 1,200 devices including mobiles, tablets, computers and connected TVs.last_img read more

Belarusian telco Beltelecom has added two packages

first_imgBelarusian telco Beltelecom has added two packages from Russian content providers Amedia and NTV+ to its Zala TV offering.The Amedia package includes channels Amedia, Amedia 2, Amedia Premium and Amedia HIT, while the NTV+ package includes Nashe Kino, Kino, Kino 2 and Premiera.Amedia provides a range of international movies, while Amedia 2 focuses on Russian TV series and movies. Amedia Premium delivers new content from HBO, Showtime, CBS, Warner Bros, ABC Studios and the BBC.Nashe Kino focuses on Soviet-era movies, while Kino provides a range of popular movies and Kino 2 provides a choice of international movies and Premiera offers a choice of recent releases.last_img read more