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Business Owner Will Go to Prison for Obstructing DOL Wage and Hour Investigation
Employers should take wage and hour investigations seriously, as a failure to do so may have serious consequences. This is evidenced by the recent sentencing of a New Hampshire business owner after a federal court found that he obstructed two wage and hour investigations.
The U.S. District Court for the District of New Hampshire sentenced Kevin Corriveau, owner and operator of Kevin Corriveau Painting Inc. to six months imprisonment followed by two years of supervised release, as well as a $25,000 criminal fine for one count of obstruction of justice. Corriveau pled guilty on Dec. 15, 2017, to obstructing two U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division (WHD) investigations and a subsequent civil lawsuit filed by the Department of Labor’s Office of the Solicitor for alleged violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). In his plea, Corriveau admitted that he caused an employee of his company to provide false information to WHD investigators in 2009 and 2011 and knowingly created and provided fraudulent information to the Department of Labor attorneys in 2013 in connection with the civil suit.
“Kevin Corriveau solicited his employees to make false statements to investigators during a WHD investigation which uncovered over $200,000 in unpaid wages. The Office of Inspector General will continue to investigate those who obstruct the Department’s efforts to ensure the integrity of its programs,” said Peter Nozka, Acting Special Agent-in-Charge, New York Region, U.S. Department of Labor Office of Inspector General.
In a related case, Corriveau Painting Inc.’s company treasurer and office manager pled guilty and was fined $10,000 on Dec. 21, 2017, for two counts of criminally violating the FLSA, including willfully failing to pay proper overtime and knowingly making a materially false statement in connection with the WHD’s investigation.