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Neil Stewart Ruut (Read 10713 times)
Reply #2 - 25. Nov 2010 at 13:29

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Two Hobart security company owners with a history of underpaying workers have been fined a record $136,900 for their latest breach.

Neil Stewart Ruut and his wife Cindy Michelle Ruut, of Blackmans Bay in Hobart, jointly received the fine in the Federal Magistrates Court.

Federal Magistrate Frank Turner imposed the fine after the Ruuts admitted they were involved in their company, Security Protection Services Pty Ltd, underpaying 47 workers a total of $170,000 from March 2006 to June 2008.

Federal Magistrate Turner found the Ruuts were involved in 148 contraventions of workplace laws.

The Ruuts’ fine, which they must pay within 60 days, is the result of a prosecution by the Fair Work Ombudsman.

It is the biggest fine the Agency has secured against individuals, although the Agency has secured bigger fines against companies.

Security Protection Services went into liquidation in January this year, preventing the Fair Work Ombudsman from continuing its prosecution against the company.

Fair Work Ombudsman Tasmanian Director Glenn Jordan says the case sends a message that ripping-off employees is a serious offence that will not be tolerated.

“We are committed to pursuing individuals who engage in this sort of conduct and holding them to account, even if their company folds,” Mr Jordan said.

In his judgment on the case, Federal Magistrate Turner said businesses operated by the Ruuts have “had extensive involvement in breaching employee entitlements in the security industry”.

He said security companies Neil Ruut had been involved with had been the subject of four separate underpayment proceedings in the Tasmanian Industrial Commission in the past 15 years, with each case involving the Commission ordering that underpaid workers be back-paid thousands of dollars.

Federal Magistrate Turner said Cindy Ruut had less involvement than her husband in these cases - but said the husband and wife were “equally responsible” for the underpayment of the Security Protection Services employees.

“Past cases remove the ability to claim that the underpayments were accidental or made without knowing of the care required,” Federal Magistrate Turner said.

“There is no proof that the underpayments were deliberate but they were at the very least careless, they appear to have occurred wantonly.”

The Fair Work Ombudsman started investigating Security Protection Services in October 2007 after receiving a complaint from an employee of the company.

Inspectors found the company had been paying employees a flat rate for all hours worked, resulting in underpayments of their casual loadings, minimum shift pay, leave loading, weekend and public holiday rates, overtime and shift allowances.

Federal Magistrate Turner criticised the Ruuts for leasing a Landcruiser and BMW at a total cost of more than $170,000 after inspectors alerted them to the underpayments.

 

Ah! Working in Security where finding the real thief could be your employer. Now is the time to check your super account.
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Reply #1 - 16. Oct 2009 at 11:29

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The federal workplace watchdog has launched a prosecution against a Tasmanian security company, alleging it underpaid 47 employees a total of $176,000.

The Workplace Ombudsman is prosecuting Security Protection Services Pty Ltd, located in Hobart.

The Agency is also prosecuting the company’s manager Neil Stewart Ruut and his wife Cindy Michelle Ruut, the company’s sole director, claiming they were complicit in the underpayments.   

In prosecution documents lodged in the Federal Magistrates Court in Hobart, the Workplace Ombudsman alleges Security Protection Services paid workers a flat rate for all hours worked, resulting in underpayments of employees’ casual loadings, leave loading, minimum shift pay, overtime, weekend rates, public holiday rates and split shift allowances.

The prosecution documents allege Security Protection Services underpaid 47 employees a total of $176,000, with the biggest underpayment of an individual worker being $25,000.

Workplace Ombudsman Executive Director Michael Campbell says the decision to prosecute Security Protection Services and Mr and Mrs Ruut followed refusals to fully rectify the alleged underpayments or co-operate with workplace inspectors.

The Workplace Ombudsman is seeking a Court Order for all money owed to workers to be repaid and for penalties against the company and Mr and Mrs Ruut, of Blackmans Bay, Hobart.

The maximum penalty per breach of the Act is $33,000 for a company and $6600 for an individual.

The federal Workplace Ombudsman is the independent statutory agency responsible for investigating and enforcing compliance with Commonwealth workplace relations laws.

http://www.fwo.gov.au/Media-centre/Pages/20090505.aspx
 

Ah! Working in Security where finding the real thief could be your employer. Now is the time to check your super account.
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16. Oct 2009 at 10:00

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Hobart-based Security Protection Services Pty Ltd, manager Neil Stewart Ruut and his wife Cindy, the sole director, over the alleged underpayment of $176,000 to 47 employees

http://www.fwo.gov.au/Media-centre/Pages/20090730-01.aspx
 

Ah! Working in Security where finding the real thief could be your employer. Now is the time to check your super account.
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