Former UAW Vice President Joe Ashton speaks during a GM announcement at a plant in Spring Hill, Tenn. in 2011.
DETROIT – Federal prosecutors have charged retired United Auto Workers Vice President Joseph Ashton, a former board member of General Motors, as part of its corruption probe into the union.
Ashton, who resigned from the GM board in December 2017 after reportedly being linked to the investigation, was charged with fraud and money laundering conspiracies. Money laundering is punishable by up to 10 years in prison, while the fraud charge is up to 20 years.
Ashton was charged on Wednesday in a criminal information filing, which indicates a guilty plea is expected. His attorney, Jerry Ballarotto of New Jersey, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
GM, in an emailed statement, said it “was not aware of this illegal activity until it was recently revealed by the government’s investigation.” Nor was the company aware that “he allegedly continued to benefit from…