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NY judge orders prison time, fine for union leader of illegal transit strike

[JURIST] A New York judge Monday imposed a 10-day jail sentence and a $1,000 fine for criminal contempt against transit union president Roger Toussaint [profile], who called for an illegal strike in December 2005 [Wikipedia backgrounder] that shut down New York's subways and buses. The judge will allow Toussaint to remain free for the next 30 days in order to appeal the decision; his top two deputies were also fined $500 each.

The New York City Transport Workers Union [Local 100 website; International TWU website] violated the Public Employees Fair Employment Act [text; backgrounder], a state law which prohibits state employees from striking. The strike over wages and pensions came five days before Christmas and temporarily suspended the nation's biggest mass-transit system for the first time in 25 years. A state judge imposed [JURIST report] a $1 million-per-day fine against the Union and its 33,000 members while they were on strike and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg called for the union to be held accountable. AP has more.

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