The former head of the state police union and a lobbyist for the union were arrested Wednesday morning on charges of fraud and obstruction of justice.
Dana Pullman, former president of the State Police Association of Massachusetts, and Anne Lynch, a union lobbyist, used union funds as a private "piggy bank" to enrich themselves and to make illegal reimbursements to union members or political contributions, federal officials with the Massachusetts U.S. Attorney's Office, the FBI and the IRS alleged at a press conference Wednesday.
U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling said that Pullman misused at least $75,000 of union funds, including paying for expensive personal benefits.
"He used the union debit card to pay for $9,000 in flowers, $8,000 in restaurants, and thousands more on travel, including a trip to Miami Florida with a woman with whom Pullman was having an affair at that time," Lelling said.
Federal officials also accused Pullman of accepting kickbacks from Lynch in exchange for his steering union business to her lobbying firm.
FBI Special Agent Joseph Bonavolonta, who helped oversee the investigation into Pullman and Lynch, said that the two, upon receiving subpoenas for records, then conspired to obstruct federal officials' investigation into them.
Bonavolonta said the alleged crimes cast a "shadow" over honest state police officials.
"Both Pullman and Lynch lied, cheated and tried to obstruct our investigation at the expense of those hard-working troopers and taxpayers," he said.
This is just the latest federal charge involving members of the Massachusetts State Police. Last year, the department came under fire after several troopers were charged with collecting pay for overtime shifts they did not work.
Lelling said crimes like those alleged Wednesday can only further demoralize state troopers, who he said are the victims in this case, because the funds in question came from union dues state troopers pay out of pocket. Lelling would not comment on whether state troopers previously charged by federal prosecutors are cooperating in this case.
Lelling said several times Wednesday that the federal investigation has not been closed and remains active.