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The Latest: Union defends financial practices after search

PHILADELPHIA – The Latest on federal agents searching several lined to a powerful Philadelphia labour boss (all times local):

4:30 p.m.

A Philadelphia labour union is defending its financial practices after federal agents searched several properties linked to the group’s powerful boss.

Frank Keel, a spokesman for the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 98, says the union undergoes “an extensive annual audit and is subject to many layers of financial controls and oversights.” He adds that makes union officials question “reports of allegations of financial impropriety as the basis of the investigation.”

FBI and IRS agents searched Johnny “Doc” Dougherty’s (DOCK’-er-tees), South Philadelphia home. They also were in a nearby bar, the electricians’ union headquarters and City Councilman Bobby Henon’s office. Henon is Dougherty’s protege.

Keel called the search of Dougherty’s home “puzzling.”

A spokeswoman for the FBI and a spokesman for the IRS both said they couldn’t disclose the nature of the investigation.

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3:50 p.m.

An IRS spokesman is confirming his agency is involved in searching several properties linked to a powerful Philadelphia labour boss.

Spokesman Edward Manning says IRS agents were throughout the city Friday in the investigation of Johnny “Doc” Dougherty (DOCK’-er-tee), but couldn’t give more details.

FBI and IRS agents searched Dougherty’s South Philadelphia home. They also were in a nearby bar, the electricians’ union headquarters and City Councilman Bobby Henon’s office. Henon is Dougherty’s protege.

Dougherty runs the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 98 and has long been a powerful political force in the city. Henon is a longtime union official who joined council in 2012.

Dougherty tells The Associated Press that nothing’s changed since the FBI searched his home a decade ago except “the tomato bushes in the back.”

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10:30 a.m.

The FBI is searching several properties linked to a powerful Philadelphia labour boss and the City Hall office of his protege on City Council.

An FBI spokeswoman confirms that agents Friday morning are searching the home of Johnny “Doc” Dougherty (DOCK’-er-tee). They’re also in a nearby bar, the electricians’ union headquarters and Councilman Bobby Henon’s office.

FBI spokeswoman Carrie Adamowski says she can’t disclose the nature of the ongoing investigation.

Dougherty runs the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 98 and has long been a powerful political force in the city. Henon is a longtime union official who joined council in 2012.

Dougherty tells The Associated Press that nothing’s changed since the FBI searched his home a decade ago except “the tomato bushes in the back.”

Calls to Henon’s office and union headquarters rang unanswered.