Monsignor asks union members to pay chiefs' rackets defense




PROVIDENCE--Members of the Laborers International Union are being asked by a Roman Catholic monsignor to dig into their pockets and donate money to help defray legal expenses for the union's top management, federally indicted on labor racketeering charges.

New England members of the 900,000 member union have received a fund-raising letter, signed by a Catholic monsignor, an unsuccessful candidate fro Rhode Island attorney genera and a North Providence dentist.

Monsignor Galliano J. Cavallaro of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church in Providence said he agreed "with the thoughts of the letter. I'm not going to be pinned down to anyone person, one cause, one statement or any words."

The letter also signed by Warwick lawyer Charles J. Rogers Jr. and dentist Albert Picozzi, maintains that Arthur E. Coia of Providence and Angelo Fosco of Chicago, two top union officials, have been "the targets of a well-orchestrated campaign b the federal government to repress individual rights."

The two men, along with reputed New England crime boss Raymond L. S. Patriarca, were indicted in Miami and charged with conspiracy to provide organized crime figures million of dollars in kickbacks from union trust funds.

Patriarca was excused from extradition to Miami for arraignment because of poor health:

Coia said the New England Laborers Defense League, which sent the letter to union members, was established at his suggestion last year. Coia also said he would take money for his own defense from the fund if he has to.

Roger and Picozzi could not be reached for comment last night.

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