Jail Sentence for failure to pay wages

August 17, 2017

NEWMARKET, ON – An employer who failed to pay wages after being ordered to do so by a Ministry of Labour employment standards officer has been given a jail sentence and fines.

The director of the company, Luai Namo, has received a jail sentence of 30 days and total fines of $40,000; the corporation, 674841 Ontario Inc., has been fined $84,000 ($6,000 for each of 14 counts).

The defendants operated convenience stores attached to Shell gas stations in Scarborough. The addresses were 242 Eglinton Avenue East, 640 Markham Road, 1201 Markham Road, 3051 Lawrence Avenue East and 805 Victoria Park Avenue.

There were 14 orders to pay wages, totalling $46,537.45 and ranging from $400 to $5,000, all of which remain outstanding. Of the 14 claimants, 12 were making minimum wage.

The sentences were imposed by Justice of the Peace Carol L. Seglins in Newmarket court on August 16, 2017.

A person who contravenes the Employment Standards Act or its regulations, or fails to comply with an order under the act, is guilty of an offence. An individual convicted under the ESA may be fined up to $50,000 or imprisonment of up to 12 months, or both; if a corporation, the fine may be up to $100,000. For a corporation with a previous conviction, the fine may be up to $250,000; if there is more than one previous conviction the fine may be up to $500,000.

The court also imposed a 25-per-cent victim fine surcharge as required by the Provincial Offences Act. The surcharge is credited to a special provincial government fund to assist victims of crime.