Andover Man Among Union Members Accused of TV Show Extortion

United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz.

An Andover man is among four members of Teamsters Local 25 accused by federal prosecutors of attempting to extort a television reality show into providing “no-work” jobs.

Mark Harrington, 61, of Andover; Robert Cafarelli, 45, of Middleton; John Fidler, 51, of Holbrook; and Daniel Redmond, 47, of Medford; were arrested Wednesday after being indicted on conspiracy to extort and attempted extortion of a television production company in order to obtain no-work jobs for fellow Teamsters, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s office, Boston According to the indictment, beginning in spring, 2014, a non-union production company began filming a reality television show in and around Boston. The company hired its own employees, including drivers, for the filming of the show and did not need work performed by union members. Beginning June 5, of that year, the defendants conspired to force the production company to pay Local 25 members for unnecessary work by threatening physical and economic harm to the company.

“The indictment alleges that a group of rogue Teamsters employed old school thug tactics to get no-work jobs from an out-of-town production company,” said United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz. “In the course of this alleged conspiracy, they managed to chase a legitimate business out of the City of Boston and then harassed the cast and crew when they set up shop in Milton.  This kind of conduct reflects poorly on our city and must be addressed for what it is – not union organizing, but criminal extortion.”

Among other things, the indictment alleges that on June 10, 2014, the defendants showed up at a restaurant in Milton where the production company was filming.  The defendants entered the production area and began walking in lockstep toward the doors of the restaurant where they accosted film crew members and attempted to forcibly enter the restaurant. Throughout the morning, the defendants yelled racial and homophobic slurs at the film crew and others, threatened crew and cast members, and shouted profanities.  The defendants also blocked vehicles from the entryway to the set, and used physical violence and threats of physical violence to try and prevent people from entering the set.