HUNTLEY – A Huntley concrete contractor pleaded guilty to defrauding labor union benefit plans and failing to pay more than $600,000 in taxes, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
In March 2015, a 27-count federal indictment claimed that Thomas Manning, 60, president of T. Manning Concrete Inc., underpaid required monthly contributions for the company’s labor union employees and falsified the number of hours the employees worked.
Manning was unavailable for comment Monday. Phone numbers listed for his company have been disconnected. The company’s website is no longer active. The state of Illinois dissolved T. Manning Concrete Inc. as a business in 2012, according to online records.
The indictment alleged that Manning failed to collect and pay nearly $600,680 in taxes for the employees’ share of the Federal Insurance Contributions Act.
Manning pleaded guilty to the charges in a written plea agreement filed this week, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
Hiring cement masons and workers from labor unions in northern Illinois, Manning was required by collective bargaining agreements to report monthly to benefit plans the number of hours each union employee worked and disclose the company’s contributions to the plans.
Beginning in 2006, Manning started to defraud the benefit plans, underreporting the number of hours employees worked in the monthly reports and underpaying the required monthly contributions for the company’s covered employees, according to the U.S. State’s Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois.
In an effort to conceal the understatements, Manning paid the covered employees for additional hours “under the table,” using checks drawn from nonpayroll accounts controlled by Manning. Manning sent the reports and contribution checks to the benefit plans via U.S. mail.
Because of the falsified reports, Manning caused the benefit plans to make false statements in annual reports required by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, the federal indictment alleges. Because he paid covered employees under the table, Manning also failed to collect, account and pay $600,680 in federal taxes for the employees’ share of FICA between 2007 and 2010, the indictment said.
Manning also submitted falsified forms to the Internal Revenue Service because of the underreported wages and withheld taxes, the indictment said.
Under the 27-count indictment, Manning was charged with five counts of mail fraud, five counts of causing false statements to be made on forms required by ERISA, 16 counts of failing to collect and pay FICA taxes, and one count of obstructing the IRS.
Manning is scheduled for sentencing Jan. 24.
Manning faces a $250,000 fine, up to five years in prison and three years of supervised release for each count, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.