31Aug/160

United Airlines manager caught lying to OSHA in asbestos case

Marty Watters, Investigative Reporter

Sylvia Empen

Sylvia Empen

Occupational Safety and Health Administration officials Sukhvir Kaur and Angeline Loftus recently confirmed that United Airlines facilities maintenance manager Sylvia Empen lied to OSHA officials, and that by doing so Empen broke the law and could face criminal charges.

And as with many federal cases, it could be the cover-up that ultimately lands people in jail.

And for her part in the illegal removal and dumping of asbestos from buildings at United's former World Headquarters (WHQ), jail might be just where Empen is headed.

 DOJ Stresses Individual Accountability in New “Yates Memo”

Enhanced Criminal Prosecutions of Worker Safety Violations – Employers Beware

Here are the facts:

Empen contracted A&E Services Inc. to remove asbestos from United's former WHQ.

A&E Services hired Mexican day labor on an ongoing basis to illegally remove and dump the asbestos.

In doing so A&E exposed United employees and the public to vast amounts of airborne asbestos fibers.

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United employees then filed an official complaint with OSHA.

Ms. Empen told OSHA officials who were investigating that complaint for the record that A&E Services was removing fiberglass insulation and not asbestos.

Now thanks to whistleblowers at United, OSHA officials have learned that A&E Services was in fact removing large amounts of asbestos - not fiberglass insulation - from United's former WHQ, and that Empen lied to them during the investigation.

IMG_1313.PNG

Thanks to Empen's lies, OSHA prematurely closed its investigation. As a result, United employees and members of the public are still being exposed to airborne asbestos fibers throughout the entire campus of United's former WHQ.

It has also been established in recent meetings with OSHA officials that during their interviews with United employees, OSHA investigators did not inform the employees of their whistleblower protection rights.

That will be very important moving forward due to the fact that United employees have since endured physical threats and retaliations at work for telling OSHA investigators and United management what they knew about the illegal asbestos removal.

Steps are now being taken to ensure that United employees begin receiving the workplace protections that they are due under the federal whistleblower protection laws.

Furthermore, U.S. Attorney Zachary Fardon has been informed of this situation and has even received a referral from the New Jersey U.S. Attorney's Office to investigate these developments due to concerns that United has violated the Non-Prosecution Agreement it entered into in a public corruption case with that office.

The question now is: How high up the United Airlines management chain does this cover-up go?

Oscar Munoz, does the buck stop with you?

IMG_1310.PNG

10Jun/160

ALERT: United Airlines employees being tested for asbestos exposure!

Marty Watters, Investigative Reporter

Oscar Munoz

Oscar Munoz

 

United Airlines has finally admitted to exposing employees and visitors to airborne asbestos fibers at its former World Headquarters (WHQ) in Elk Grove Village IL. and is providing medical testing and monitoring to those who have been exposed to the airborne asbestos.

However, there is one problem.

United management is not notifying people (estimated to be in the thousands) that they were exposed and that medical help is available!

--------------------------------------------------------------
----Original Message-----
From: Marty Watters
To: Christina Landgraf (UAL Counsel)
Cc: Oscar Munoz (UAL CEO), Brett Hart (UAL General Counsel)
Sent: June 8, 2016 at 11:51 AM
Subject: Fwd: Asbestos medical testing (United Airlines)

Ms. Landgraf

As you know, United Airlines has quietly been providing medical testing for employees who are aware that they have been exposed to airborne asbestos fibers at United's former World Headquarters in Elk Grove Village IL. due to the abatements performed by A&E Services Inc.

When is United going to make an official announcement to inform all those who don't realize that they have been exposed?

Marty Watters
[redacted]

-----Original Message-----
From: Marty Watters
To: Geoffrey Celander (UAL Health & Safety)
Sent: June 7, 2016 at 11:50 AM
Subject: Asbestos medical testing (United Airlines)

Mr. Geoffrey Celander

United Airlines is now offering employees medical testing due to the fact that they have been exposed to airborne asbestos fibers at United's former World Headquarters in Elk Grove village IL.

Has United Airlines made an official announcement informing all employees of this new development?

Marty Watters
[redacted]

United Airlines’ illegal abatement at former World Headquarters exposing employees to airborne asbestos fibers

http://illinoispaytoplay.com/2015/07/27/united-airlines-illegal-abatement-at-former-world-headquarters-exposing-employees-to-airborne-asbestos-fibers/
----------------------------------------------------------------------

I guess United's CEO, Oscar Munoz, thinks that what people don't know can't hurt them.

Or is it that Oscar knows that if thousands of people knew that they were exposed to asbestos, it could hurt United's stock price?

I'm thinking the latter.

However, as we all know, being exposed to airborne asbestos can not only hurt you, it can in fact kill you.

So if you have ever worked at or visited United Airlines' former WHQ, you'll want to contact Sylvia Empen (847-700-1144) at United Airlines so that you can receive the proper paperwork to insure that you get medical attention.

IMG_0954.PNG

Don't worry about the bill. United Airlines will get that for you.

Or should I say United's shareholders will get that for you?

 

Is United's former WHQ a potential asbestos superfund site? More to come.....

7Mar/160

United Airlines’ asbestos cover-up: Seyfarth Shaw attorneys caught lying to the court!

Marty Watters, Investigative Reporter

 

Meagan Newman

Meagan Newman

IMG_0836-0.PNG

Ada Dolph

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In an effort to conceal the criminal behavior of their client, United Airlines, Seyfarth Shaw LLP attorneys Ada Dolph and Meagan Newman have not only committed the crime of fraud on the court. Even worse, they broke the Golden Rule of the legal profession.

They got caught!

That's unforgivable for a high-priced law firm like Seyfarth Shaw.

You see, in the real world, giant corporations like United don't pay the big buck law firms to lie in court. Any idiot can lie in court.

They pay the big law firms not to get caught lying in court.

But getting caught not once, but twice! Wow! Katie bar the door.

------------------------------------------------------

-----Original Message-----

From: Marty Watters
To: Meagan Newman (Seyfarth Shaw)
Cc: David Rowland (Seyfarth Shaw), Oscar Munoz (UAL), Stephen Poor (Seyfarth Shaw), Ada Dolph (Seyfarth Shaw), Christina Landgraf (UAL), Brett Hart (UAL)
Sent: February 28, 2016 at 11:58 AM
Subject: United Airlines' legal counsel

Ms. Meagan Newman

United Airlines and Seyfarth Shaw attorney Ada Dolph lied in Judge Pamela Lakes court when it was claimed that United could not find asbestos records that the law requires United to keep.

After being caught in that lie Seyfath Shaw ultimately produced the asbestos records in question (see attached court document). Then at a later date United with the cooperation of Seyfarth Shaw and OSHA put forth an even more incredible falsehood, this time in Judge Dennis Phillips court. The lie that is now being told in Judge Phillips court is: that the very same asbestos records that United and Seyfarth Shaw were ultimately forced to produce in Judge Lakes court - once again do not exist.

Seriously, have the folks at Seyfarth Shaw lost their minds?

If this situation were not so serious, it would be funny!

I feel it necessary to remind you that:

“Lawyers can never assist a client in the commission of a crime or a fraud, and that’s well established. Lawyers do not get a free pass to commit crimes.” When considered in the context of the Justice Department’s 2015 policy shift placing greater emphasis on individual accountability for corporate misconduct, corporate counsel would be wise to see the writing on the wall and take steps to protect themselves.

Ms. Newman, do you have anything you would like to say in defense of Seyfarth Shaw's conduct in this matter?

Marty Watters
[redacted]

-----Original Message-----
From: Marty Watters
To: Alexis Anderson
Cc: Judge Pamela Lakes
Sent: September 2, 2015 at 10:36 AM
Subject: Fwd: Willful violations (United Airlines)

Ms. Alexis Anderson

As we discussed, Ms. Ada Dolph and United Airlines are making false representations to the court.

United Airlines’ illegal abatement at former World Headquarters exposing employees to airborne asbestos fibers

http://illinoispaytoplay.com/2015/07/27/united-airlines-illegal-abatement-at-former-world-headquarters-exposing-employees-to-airborne-asbestos-fibers/

Marty Watters
[redacted]

-----Original Message-----
From: Marty Watters
To: Ada Dolph (Seyfarth Shaw)
Cc: Brett Hart (UAL), Jeff Smisek (UAL)
Sent: September 1, 2015 at 12:09 PM
Subject: Fwd: Willful violations (United Airlines)

Ms. Ada Dolph

The asbestos records that you told Judge Pamela Lakes you looked "high and low" for but could not find.

I found them!

They were at United Airlines WHQ the whole time.

Care to comment?

Marty Watters

----- Forwarded Message -----
From: Marty Watters
To: Anthony Santucci (OSHA)
Sent: Mon, 06 Jul 2015 17:33:28 -0000 (UTC)
Subject: Willful violations (United Airlines)

Anthony

The attached documents demonstrate that United Airlines had full knowledge of the laws and regulations governing asbestos removal when the abatement of classroom 8108 was done in 1994.

Clearly the asbestos abatement of classrooms 8101, 8102, 8103, 8104 and 8105 in 2014 were willful violations of the law.

It gets better!

Marty Watters

-----------------------------------------------

While Dolph and Newman are without a doubt willing liars, they clearly are not the caliber of liar you expect to get when you hire a pricey law firm like Seyfarth Shaw.

After I proved that the asbestos records did in fact exist and that I had copies of them, Seyfarth attorney Ada Dolph finally turned the asbestos records over to the plaintiff in that case.

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Faced with the incontrovertible proof that the records existed I guess she realized she had no choice but to hand them over.

Now Meagan Newman, Dolph's colleague at Seyfarth, is lying in another court case involving the same plaintiff. But this time the lie is that the same asbestos records Seyfarth has already produced don't exist!

And the insanity does not end there.

The plaintiff also received a copy of United's asbestos records from the Occupational Health and Safety Administration.

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And where did OSHA get those records?

Yep, you guessed it. From United attorneys who are still claiming to this day that the records they already gave to the plaintiff and OSHA don't exist.

Brilliant legal minds at work here? I think not.

Clearly these high-priced attorneys believe passing the bar gives them a license to lie.

That may well be true in Chicago.

However, Seyfarth Shaw attorneys should at least be expected to come up with plausable lies.

Because as everyone knows, when you get caught lying to the court twice, you are guilty of committing crimes!

Much more to come....

21Sep/150

OSHA is attempting to cover up United Airlines’ criminal behavior

Marty Watters, Investigative Reporter

The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) in Chicago is currently doing all that it can to cover up United Airlines' illegal removal and dumping of asbestos from its former World Headquarters located in Elk Grove Village, IL.

Do the people involved in this cover-up even realize the mind-boggling stupidity that they are displaying in their remarkably audacious attempts to make United Airlines asbestos problems go away?

Because in the process, OSHA is deliberately allowing United employees to be exposed to this known carcinogen. By all accounts, what they are both doing is a serious crime!

United was bold enough to buy political considerations from the Port Authority in New Jersey, so why would anyone doubt that United would do the same thing in Chicago?

I mean really it's Chicago!

So that there is no confusion, I am stating unequivocally that United Airlines is being protected by OSHA. And there is undeniable proof that this is the case.

This should come as no surprise to anyone. The protection racket game is part of doing business in Chicago. And the government in Illinois plays the game better than anyone.

Take, for example, how another Illinois company - Kehrer Brothers Construction, which clearly did not purchase the OSHA Protection Plan - is being treated compared to United.

__________________________________________________________________________

-----Original Message-----
From: Marty Watters
To: Anthony Santucci (OSHA)
Cc: Sukhvir Kaur (OSHA)
Sent: August 20, 2015 at 11:57 AM
Subject: Fwd: OSHA protects foreign workers - but not United Airlines employees!

Tony,

Care to comment?

Marty Watters

All indications are that OSHA is more concerned about the rights of temporary foreign guest-workers (H-B2) than they are about the health and well being of United Airlines employees (U.S. citizens) and their families.

Compare the charges leveled against Kehrer Brothers Construction to the well-documented far more egregious violations that are common at United Airlines former WHQ.

https://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/JosephKehrerKehrerBrothersConstructionInc_1043352_0810_15.pdf

Illinois construction companies, manager face nearly $2M in fines
for exposing workers to known asbestos hazards
Companies ignored danger of asbestos at Okawville renovation project

https://www.osha.gov/newsrelease/reg5-20150811.html

-----Original Message-----

From: Marty Watters
To: Anthony Santucci (OSHA)
Cc: Sukhvir Kaur (OSHA)
Sent: August 11, 2015 at 8:37 AM
Subject: Fwd: Asbestos cover-up at United Airlines

Tony

Does OSHA have anything to say in its defense?

-----Original Message-----
From: Marty Watters
To: Megan McCarthy (Dir. Communications)
Sent: August 10, 2015 at 3:25 PM
Subject: Fwd: Asbestos cover-up at United Airlines

Ms. Megan McCarthy

Does United Airlines have anything to say?

Marty Watters

-----Original Message-----
From: Marty Watters
To: Brett Hart (UAL), Ada Dolph (Seyfarth Shaw), Jeff Smisek (UAL)
Sent: August 8, 2015 at 4:28 PM
Subject: Fwd: Asbestos cover-up at United Airlines

Which one of you licensed attorneys would like to comment on the asbestos cover-up going on at United's WHQ?

-----Original Message-----
From: Marty Watters
To: Scott Newland
Sent: August 7, 2015 at 10:28 AM
Subject: Fwd: United Airlines accuses Burns McDonnell

Mr. Scott Newland

United Airlines is claiming that the attached asbestos survey produced by Burns McDonnell falsely indicates asbestos were it does not exist. And, that your firm had an incentive to provide an erroneous survey. United is claiming that the spray-on fire proofing (shaded orange) is not asbestos.

1) Does Burns McDonnell stand behind the survey results provided?

2) Please address United's accusation that Burns McDonnell had something to gain by providing false asbestos test results.

Marty Watters
(redacted)

United Airlines’ illegal abatement at former World Headquarters exposing employees to airborne asbestos fibers

http://illinoispaytoplay.com/2015/07/27/united-airlines-illegal-abatement-at-former-world-headquarters-exposing-employees-to-airborne-asbestos-fibers/

-----Original Message-----
From: Marty Watters
To: Anthony Santucci (DOL)
Sent: July 8, 2015 at 9:12 AM
Subject: United Airlines South Building (boiler room)

Anthony

As we discussed the attached blueprint of United Airlines south building will direct you to where the illegal asbestos removal in the boiler room was being conducted. (area shaded orange)

Marty Watters

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_____________________________________________________________________________

Everyone knows that to run a truly successful protection racket, not only do you need to go to extraordinary lengths to protect those who pay you, you also need to make an example and punish those who don't.

And punishing the average Joe is the one thing that OSHA and the EPA are very good at.
         ______________________________________________________________________________

-----Original Message-----
From: Marty Watters
To: Oscar Munoz (UAL)
Cc: Brett Hart (UAL)
Sent: September 17, 2015 at 10:26 AM
Subject: Fwd: United Airlines Illegal asbestos removal and dumping (boiler room south building)

Mr. Munoz

Would you like to see the recordings?

Marty Watters

----- Forwarded Message -----
From: Marty Watters
To: Sukhvir Kaur (OSHA)
Cc: Anthony Santucci (OSHA)
Sent: Wed, 24 Jun 2015 19:55:36 -0000 (UTC)
Subject: Fwd: United Airlines Illegal asbestos removal and dumping (boiler room south building)

Ms. Kaur

The fact that you have not replied to my offer below and have not returned my phone calls leads me to conclude that you do not want to see the video recorded proof that United Airlines is illegally removing asbestos from its campus in Elk Grove, IL

My question to you now is: Why do you not want to see the proof?

-----Original Message-----
From: Marty Watters
To: Sukhvir Kaur (OSHA)
Sent: June 11, 2015 at 12:13 PM
Subject: United Airlines Illegal asbestos removal and dumping (boiler room south building)

Ms. Sukhvir Kaur

Are you interested in a video recording of the illegal removal of asbestos from United Airlines facilities located at 1200 E. Algonquin Rd. Elk Grove Village, IL?

Marty Watters

________________________________________________________________________________

To date, OSHA has shown absolutely no interest in seeing the video-recorded proof that United is illegally removing and dumping asbestos from its former WHQ.

Even though United Airlines has been served up to OSHA on a silver platter!

Much more to come, including OSHA's partner in crime: the Environmental Protection Agency.

 OSHA, EPA, United Airlines, Burns McDonnell and Seyfarth Shaw were all contacted but declined to comment.

Related article: United Airlines Warned Employees: ‘Avoid Breathing Airborne Asbestos Fibers’