John Dougherty gets six years for corruption and embezzlement convictions

A federal judge sentenced former Philly labor leader John “Johnny Doc” Dougherty to six years in prison Thursday and ordered him to report to prison by Sept. 4.

Dougherty, who headed Local 98 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers for decades and was a major player in city and state politics, was convicted in 2021 of bribing a Philadelphia City Councilmember, then convicted again in 2023 of embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars from his union.

Federal prosecutors had asked U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Schmehl to send Dougherty to prison for 11 to 14 years, citing the breadth of his crimes.

In explaining the sentence, Schmehl said he was crediting the former union leader for his “incredible work” building up Local 98, but added, “Somewhere along that trip, you lost your way. You lost your integrity … You turned something that was created for good, and ended up using it for illicit means,” the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

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