Former Ralph’s Paso manager indicted for strike actions
September 19, 2008
By DANIEL BLACKBURN
Craig Totman, a former manager of Paso Robles’ Ralph’s grocery store, has been indicted by a federal grand jury for allegedly making false statements to investigators probing the 2003-2004 grocers’ strike.
Totman, 55, was one of eight people named Thursday in the 23-count indictment for allegedly participating in a conspiracy to undermine the labor dispute.
According to a statement issued by the Department of Justice’s Asst. U.S. Atty. Stephen A. Cazares, Totman “falsely denied to investigators that they (the current and former Ralph’s employees) hired locked out workers under false identities.” Totman faces a single federal charge.
The alleged conspiracy centered around efforts to secretly re-hire locked-out employees under false names and false Social Security numbers.
Prosecutors said the “covert re-hiring of locked-out workers was intended to better Ralph’s position in the dispute by mitigating” damage that might be done by a full-scale lockout.
Ralph’s was once located on Spring Street on the site now occupied by Scolari’s.
Telephone records indicate Totman was transferred to Southern California after the strike, where he served as manager of two Laguna Niguel-area stores. He could not be contacted for comment.
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