Monica Morgan pleads not guilty to charges in UAW-FCA conspiracy

on Aug1

Monica Morgan, right, and her attorney, Steve Fishman heading to court on Monday in Detroit. She pleaded not guilty and was released on a $10,000 bond. Photo credit: KATIE BUDA

DETROIT — Monica Morgan, one of the figures at the center of a suspected multimillion-dollar conspiracy between officials at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and the UAW, pleaded not guilty and was released on a $10,000 bond Monday following her arraignment.

Morgan was accused in a federal indictment last week of illegal dealings involving former FCA labor relations chief Alphons Iacobelli, and her deceased husband, UAW Vice President General Holiefield.

The 42-page indictment claims FCA executives partnered with UAW leaders to siphon union and company funds earmarked for employee training for lavish personal expenses.

Federal investigators claim Morgan, Iacobelli and Holiefield were at the center of the conspiracy from 2009 through 2014.

Iacobelli has been charged with taking $1 million for personal benefit and helping funnel $1.2 million from the UAW-Chrysler National Training Center to Holiefield, Morgan and other high-ranking members of the union.

The indictment says Morgan and Holiefield used union funds to pay off the $262,219.71 mortgage on their Harrison Township, Mich., home, and credit card charges of $200,000 for jewelry, designer clothes and furniture.

Morgan, a prominent Detroit photographer, was ordered by U.S. Magistrate Judge David R. Grand to relinquish her passport, along with her firearm and concealed carry license to pretrial services.

Morgan’s attorney, Steven Fishman, declined to comment after Grand entered a not guilty plea.

In 2015, a year before his death, Holiefield shot Morgan in their home, when he was cleaning his gun at the kitchen table. According to the report, the gun accidentally discharged around 8:30 p.m. A month after, a warrant was issued for his arrest, but he ultimately was not charged.

“A single round was fired, which struck his wife in the abdomen,” said Lt. John Michalke with the Macomb County Sheriff’s Office at the time.

Iacobelli will be arraigned Tuesday.

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