The federal workplace watchdog has launched a prosecution against the former operators of a Melbourne internet café, alleging they underpaid a customer service employee $33,000 over two years.
The Fair Work Ombudsman is prosecuting Swan Flooring Pty Ltd, which formerly operated the Geto Internet Café at Box Hill as well as Soo Hong Kwon, who is a director of Swan Flooring and was formerly the manager of the Geto Internet Cafe.
In prosecution documents lodged in the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court, the ombudsman alleges that a customer service employee at Geto Internet Cafe was underpaid a total of $33,193 in entitlements.
The underpayments were allegedly the result of underpayment of his minimum hourly rate between August, 2005 and September, 2007 and underpayment of his accrued annual leave entitlements upon termination of his employment.
Court papers allege the employee was paid $10-an-hour for recorded hours worked and $7-an-hour for ‘cash-in-hand hours’.  
The Fair Work Ombudsman says the man should have been paid $17.88-an-hour when he was employed on a casual basis from August 2005 to January 2006 and $14.30 to $15.02-an-hour when employed on a permanent basis from February 2006 to September 2007.
The worker has been back-paid $10,372. The worker is still owed almost $22,000 but the defendants have agreed to back-pay this money.
Fair Work Ombudsman Victorian director Rhonda Murray says the decision to launch a prosecution was made because of the significant alleged underpayment.