A former United Auto Workers official from Grand Island who pleaded guilty to corruption charges may wait longer to learn his fate at sentencing.
The attorney for Jeffery Pietrzyk Sr. has requested a two-month delay in sentencing until May 5 for his UAW client. Pietrzyk's sentencing in federal court in Michigan had been scheduled for March 3.
The attorney, Robert C. Singer, whose law office is in Amherst, has asked the judge in the case for more time because another client of his is about to go on trial in federal court in Buffalo. That unrelated case involves alleged drug dealing, shootings and two murders by gangs in the neighborhood around Towne Garden Plaza.
"Over the course of the last few weeks, I have attempted to negotiate a plea to resolve this case, but those discussions have broken down and my client will be going to trial as scheduled," Singer said in a Friday court filing. "My client is alleged to have committed several shootings and a murder during the course of the alleged conspiracy." Two co-defendants also will be on trial.
Singer notes he is a solo practitioner and that the Buffalo trial will "require me to shut down most of my practice during the trial." Singer also said his responsibilities in the Buffalo case will affect his ability to prepare for Pietrzyk's sentencing case.
Singer said the Buffalo trial is expected to take eight to 10 weeks following jury selection, and that the government's witness list consists of about 225 witnesses.
Pietrzyk, 74, pleaded guilty to federal corruption charges last October, stemming from his time working for a UAW vice president at the union's Detroit headquarters. Prior to that position, Pietrzyk was shop chairman of UAW Local 774 at General Motors' Town of Tonawanda engine plant.
Pietrzyk was charged by federal prosecutors with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering over $123,000 in kickbacks prosecutors said he received from vendors that made jackets and watches featuring the UAW logo. Pietrzyk is one of a host of current and former UAW officials implicated in a corruption scandal.
In his court filing, Singer said he had spoken to Frances Carlson, an assistant U.S. attorney in Pietrzyk's case, and that Carlson "indicated that the government is not opposed to granting this adjournment."