Rail workers win back wages
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Issued 19 June
A recruitment agency consultant supplying rail workers was
to pay back a total of over £11,000 in withheld wages today at Great
Yarmouth Magistrates Court. This follows a prosecution by the
Government’s Employment Agency Standards inspectorate.
Christine Lewiss, from Trimmingham near Norwich, a director of
several limited companies, was also ordered to pay £1,000 in costs
after the prosecution for withholding pay from nine workers.
Lord Young, Minister for Employment Relations said:
“We are going full-steam ahead to tackle agencies like these
that exploit vulnerable workers.
“This verdict sends a clear signal that we will take action to
de-rail rogue recruiters in Norfolk, and across the country. The action
taken here demonstrates the increased impact that the expanded
inspectorate is having in tackling those who flout the law”.
In 2008 inspectors raised the warning signal to Ms Lewiss,
reprimanding her for failing to pay workers, not issuing terms and
conditions and failing to hold required information about employees.
Despite this, Ms Lewiss continued to flout the laws and EAS pursued a
- The Employment Agency Standards inspectorate is
part of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. The
Inspectorate carries out inspections of agencies on the basis of
perceived risk of non-compliance and investigates complaints about
- Agencies that break the law could face
prosecution and, as of 6 April 2009, be subject to unlimited fines for
the most serious offences. Rogue agencies could also be banned from
operating for up to ten years.
- Guidance for agency workers can be found on http://www.direct.gov/agencyworkers.
Guidance for employment agencies can be found at http://www.businesslink.gov.uk/employingpeople.
inspectorate carries out regular targeted investigations. Recent
investigations were carried out in the West Midlands, Manchester,
Glasgow, London and Darlington. Sectors examined included construction,
driving, entertainment, modelling and teaching.
defendant pleaded Guilty on 5.6.2009 to 9 charges of withholding wages
from workers contrary to Regulation 12 of the Conduct of Employment
Agencies and Employment Businesses Regulations 2003 and section 5(2) of
the Employment Agencies Act 1973.
- The nine offences
were committed by two companies operated by Ms Lewiss which were
trading as employment businesses, Rail Recruit UK Ltd and Rail Recruit
UK Projects Ltd. The 1973 Act extends criminal liability to
where the offence was committed with their consent, connivance or
- The loss to workers amounts to £11,187.
- Rail Recruit UK Ltd was compulsorily wound up on 5.11.2008
on the petition of a creditor.
About the Author
© Crown Copyright.
from the BERR-
Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform replacing DTI
- Department for Trade and Industry. Reproduced under the terms and
conditions of the Click-Use Licence.
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2009-06-20 00:07:09 in Legal Articles