Sentencing set for two employers

Offenses are against Pension and Labor Laws

Two employers who previously pleaded guilty to offenses involving employees will be sentenced on June 25.

Crown counsel Kenneth Ferguson asked for the sentencing date after citing a lack of progress in the defendants paying what they were legally required to pay.

The case of Michael Witter, trading as M & R construction, involved charges of refusing to comply with an order of the Labour Tribunal Board. Mr. Ferguson said four employees were owed a total of $15,120. Guilty pleas were entered in 2011, but the money has not been paid. The defendant’s attorney was thought to be off island.

The case of Champion House concerns failure to contribute to a pension plan for employees and failure to pay arrears within the time given by the superintendent of pensions. Guilty pleas were entered in February 2010. The matter has been before the courts since 2008 and the charges cover a period from January 1999 to August 2008.

Business owners Uriel and Dorothy Scott stood in the dock, and Mrs. Scott spoke to the matter after Mr. Ferguson told Magistrate Grace Donalds that their attorney had been granted permission to come off record. He said the business was previously making payments as agreed, but the pension plan administrator indicated that no payments have been received since May 2014.

“I indicated on the last occasion that if we did not get any positive feedback from the company, we would move to sentencing,” Mr. Ferguson advised the court.

Ms. Scott detailed problems the business had been having, which had resulted in a low cash flow. With restructuring and up-to-date marketing, she hoped to have her proper cash flow in place by the end of April so the business could keep up payments. In her opinion, what was owed was down to $60,000 and she needed go to the pension administrator and “sort that out with them” because the authority’s figure was higher.

The magistrate agreed that both matters be adjourned for three months.

In the case of Hurlstone Ltd., Mr. Ferguson said he had received a letter from the company’s attorneys making a proposal. He explained that he would need to discuss it with the pensions inspector and the director of public prosecutions. This matter was set for mention again on April 23. K Coast Development Ltd. is up to date with payments, he advised, so these pension charges were adjourned until Nov. 26.

Halcy Lofters, representing a now defunct security company, was given until Oct. 1 to pay a balance of pension contributions totalling $7,300. Mr. Ferguson called this amount miniscule compared to sums owed by other defendants. Barrington Oliver, representing BJ’s electronics and D & B Building on pension charges, is to return to court for continued monitoring on May 28.

The owner of W5 Security Services Ltd. did not attend court as required and the magistrate issued a warrant for his arrest.

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