Court action over alleged underpayment of Melbourne fashion outlet manager

17 August 2011

Note: Reference to prosecution in this media release is a general reference to the FWO commencing proceedings for the imposition of civil penalties and should not be taken to be a reference to criminal proceedings.

The operator of a Melbourne fashion outlet who was fined last year for underpaying his staff is again facing court.

The Fair Work Ombudsman has launched a prosecution against Kooyong man Uri Burke and his private company, formerly known as Tovek Pty Ltd but now officially titled ACN 052 182 180 Pty Ltd.

Through his company, Mr Burke owns and runs CM’s Fashion outlets at various locations around Melbourne, including St Kilda.

It is alleged that Mr Burke was centrally involved in his company failing to pay $5000 in accrued annual leave entitlements to the manager of the St Kilda CM’s outlet after the manager resigned in February last year.

Fair Work inspectors discovered the alleged underpayment when they investigated a complaint from the employee.

The alleged underpayment occurred only weeks after Mr Burke and his company were fined a total of $19,500 in the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court for underpaying two employees $6940.

Fair Work Ombudsman Nicholas Wilson says the previous breaches of workplace laws and the failure to rectify the underpayment of the St Kilda manager are key factors in the decision to again prosecute Mr Burke and his company.

Mr Burke was allegedly involved in his company committing one underpayment-related breach of workplace law. He faces a maximum penalty of $6600 and his company faces a maximum penalty of $33,000.

Mr Burke was allegedly also involved in his company committing a total of five breaches of workplace laws relating to employment records and pay slips. He faces maximum penalties of $1100-$3300 per breach and his company faces penalties of $5500-$16,500 per breach.

The case is listed for a directions hearing on December 12 in the Federal Magistrates Court in Melbourne.

Employers or employees seeking assistance should contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94 or visit www.fairwork.gov.au.

A free interpreter service is available on 13 14 50 and information on the website is translated into 27 different languages.

Follow the Fair Work Ombudsman on Twitter @fairwork_gov_au external-icon.png.

Media inquiries:

Ryan Pedler, Senior Adviser Media & Stakeholder Relations
(03) 9954 2561, 0411 430 902
ryan.pedler@fwo.gov.au

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