Secretary United States Depart v. John Koresko

NOT PRECEDENTIAL UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE THIRD CIRCUIT _____________ Nos. 16-3806 & 17-1140 _____________ SECRETARY UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF LABOR v. JOHN J. KORESKO; JEANNE D. BONNEY; PENN MONT BENEFIT SERVICES INC; KORESKO & ASSOCIATES, P.C.; KORESKO LAW FIRM, P.C.; PENN PUBLIC TRUST; REGIONAL EMPLOYERS ASSURANCE LEAGUES VOLUNTARY EMPLOYEES BENEFICIARY ASSOCIATION TRUST; SINGLE EMPLOYER WELFARE BENEFIT PLAN TRUST John J. Koresko, V, Appellant _____________ On Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (D.C. Civil No. 2-09-cv-00988) District Judge: Honorable Wendy Beetlestone ______________ Submitted Under Third Circuit L.A.R. 34.1(a) January 23, 2018 ______________ Before: HARDIMAN, VANASKIE and SHWARTZ, Circuit Judges (Filed: March 23, 2018) ______________ OPINION * * This disposition is not an opinion of the full Court and pursuant to I.O.P. 5.7 does not constitute binding precedent. ______________ VANASKIE, Circuit Judge. Appellant John J. Koresko, V, proceeding pro se, appeals the District Court’s August 31, 2016, Order denying his motion for reconsideration of its April 26, 2016, order of contempt. The Court held Koresko in civil contempt after finding that he failed to comply with Court orders compelling him to turn over assets he had misappropriated from employee welfare benefit plans protected by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (“ERISA”), 29 U.S.C. 1001, et seq. Koresko also appeals the District Court’s December 5, 2016, Order denying his motion to quash a writ of garnishment issued in aid of collecting the sizeable judgment entered against Koresko. Discerning no abuse of discretion in the District Court’s decisions, we will affirm both orders. I. 1 In 2009, at the time this litigation began, Koresko was a licensed attorney and certified public accountant, and was also the President of PennMont Benefit Services Inc., a Pennsylvania corporation that conducts administrative services for trusts. The United States Department of Labor (“DOL”) filed suit against Koresko, another named individual, and related entities for alleged violations of ERISA related to their administration of the Regional Employers Assurance Leagues Voluntary Employees’ 1 Our factual recitation is limited to the matters that are relevant to this appeal. 2 Beneficiary Association (“REAL VEBA”) and the Single Employer Welfare Benefit Plan Trust (“SEWBPT”) (collectively, the “Plans”). Koresko entered his appearance as counsel for himself and all named defendants. In 2013, the DOL sought preliminary injunctive relief to remove Koresko from positions of authority over the Plans, to require him to restore Plan assets, and to prevent him from further depleting the assets. The DOL also sought the appointment of an interim Independent Fiduciary to administer the Plans. In support of its motion, the DOL asserted that Koresko had diverted Plan assets for improper purposes, such as buying condominiums on the Caribbean Island of Nevis and transferring $1.68 million from Plan accounts in the United States to a Nevis-based account named the “John Koresko Client Escrow.” (Supp. App. at 3.) During a hearing on the motion, Koresko admitted to transferring the $1.68 million and purchasing the Nevis real estate with Plan assets. ...

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