Appeal from the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania. D.C. Civil No. 85-00996.
Mansmann, Scirica and Seitz, Circuit Judges.
Plaintiff Bakerstown Container Corporation ("Bakerstown") appeals from the order of the district court granting motions for directed verdicts in favor of defendants International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen and Helpers ("International Teamsters") and General Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen and Helpers Local Union No. 538 ("Local 538"). This court has jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1291.
Bakerstown is a Pennsylvania corporation specializing in the reconditioning, remanufacturing, and recycling of steel drums. Local 538 is the local collective bargaining agent for the employees of Bakerstown and is affiliated with International Teamsters, a national labor organization; Burton W. Bloom was, at all times relevant, president of Local 538.
In September 1979, Local 538 and Bakerstown began labor contract negotiations, but no agreement was reached before the contract expired in November 1979. At that point, the Bakerstown Local 538 employees went on strike.
During the strike, Sidney Mallet, president of Malitovsky Cooperage, Bakerstown's only competitor in the area, paid money to Bloom. Some of the money received by Bloom from Mallet was distributed to the striking employees; other payments from Mallet to Bloom were then deposited into Local 538's general fund checking account. The strike ended in March 1980.
In February 1985, Bloom was convicted of willfully and knowingly receiving money from Mallet, which money was given by Mallet with the intention of influencing the actions of Bloom as president of Local 538, in violation of § 302(b)(1) of the Labor Management Relations Act of 1947, 29 U.S.C. § 186(b)(1).
Bakerstown then brought this action against Bloom, Local 538, International Teamsters, Malitovsky Cooperage, and Mallet, claiming that it suffered economic damages as a result of the defendants' participation in activities that caused or prolonged a labor strike. Bakerstown alleged that the payment of money by Mallet and the receipt of such money by Bloom gave rise to five separate claims against all of the defendants under § 302 of the Labor Management Relations Act, 29 U.S.C. § 186; 18 U.S.C. § 1962; 15 U.S.C. §§ 1, 2; and interference with contractual relations, a tort under Pennsylvania law. On appeal, however, Bakerstown presses only the § 302 claim.
The claims against Malitovsky Cooperage and its president, Sidney Mallet, were dismissed with the consent of all parties. The case was then tried before a jury in January 1989; at the close of Bakerstown's case, the district court granted motions for directed verdicts in favor of Local 538 and International Teamsters on all counts. As to the § 302 claim, the district court specifically adopted the holding of American Commercial Barge Lines Co. v. Seafarers International Union, 730 F.2d 327, 332 (5th Cir. 1984), that § 302(e) of the Labor Management Relations Act of 1947, 29 U.S.C. § 186(e), provides no private cause of action for damages resulting from violations of § 302. The district court then determined that the clear proof standard of § 6 of the Norris-LaGuardia Act was applicable to the remaining claims. It concluded that no evidence was introduced that amounted to clear proof of responsibility for or ratification of Bloom's actions on the part of International Teamsters or Local 538.
As to Bloom, the jury returned a special verdict in Bakerstown's favor on the issue of whether Bloom's conduct in violation of the labor laws was a substantial factor in causing Bakerstown's harm. Thereafter, an agreement was reached between Bakerstown and Bloom in which all counts except the § ...