Employees to get their day in court after union thugs waged bloody campaign of violence
WINCHESTER, Va. (July 31, 2000) — The Circuit Court of the City of Winchester rejected the arguments of United Auto Workers (UAW) union lawyers attempting to shield the union from its liability for authorizing, ratifying, and condoning a bloody campaign of violence against non-striking workers at Abex Friction Products in 1996.
National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation attorneys, representing the terrorized employees, convinced the court that the union could not hide behind Virginia’s Worker’s Compensation Act to insulate it from liability. The four-week strike at the Winchester brake manufacturing plant left a massive trail of violence and vandalism in its wake.
In rejecting the union’s arguments, the court commented, “the workplace is not a jungle in which coemployees may prey upon weaker coemployees.”
As part of the violence campaign, union militants dumped a severed, bloody cow’s head on the hood of a worker’s car and another in a worker’s backyard. In addition to the claims against the union itself, the suit charges several union militants with civil conspiracy and other counts for making death threats, shooting out windows, sending obscene mail, acts of stalking, theft of property, and harassing workers on the job to coerce them into quitting their jobs.
“It’s outrageous that after several union thugs have been criminally convicted and lives have been ruined, the UAW’s lawyers are trying to wash their hands of the bloody terror they caused,” said Stefan Gleason, Vice President of the National Right to Work Foundation.
Foundation attorneys introduced evidence to a Virginia special grand jury that ultimately found that union operatives met at the union hall to organize the violent crimes and distributed newsletters that directly encouraged acts of retaliation against non-striking workers. Additionally, the General District Court found several militants guilty of multiple counts of harassment and violence.
The civil suit will now head for trial on June 4, 2001. The employees seek compensatory and punitive damages from those union activists who perpetrated the terrorist acts as well as Local 149 and the UAW International union for having authorized, ratified, and condoned the acts of violence.
The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in nearly 500 cases nationwide. Its web address is www.nrtw.org.
The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, assists thousands of employees in around 250 cases nationwide per year.