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Challenger claims win in race to lead United Auto Workers

DETROIT (AP) — The challenger in the race for the United Auto Workers’ top leadership post claimed victory Saturday in a close election that is likely to give his slate of candidates control of the huge union.

In a statement, challenger Shawn Fain’s slate said that a federal court-appointed monitor has declared Fain the winner over incumbent Ray Curry. A message was left Saturday seeking confirmation from monitor Neil Barofsky.

It was the 372,000-member union’s first direct election of its 14-member International Executive Board, which came in the wake of a wide-ranging bribery and embezzlement scandal that landed two former presidents in prison.

The statement from Fain’s slate said he leads Curry by 483 votes, greater than the number of challenged ballots that remain.

The count has been going on since March 1, and Curry has filed a protest alleging election irregularities and campaign financing violations.

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