SACRAMENTO, Calif., April 24, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- The Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office recently announced charges against the operators of two construction companies for felony workers' compensation fraud. The operators allegedly underreported the number of employees to insurance companies to pay a combined total of $300,000 less in premiums. Sandra and William O'Neill of WM O'Neill Lath and Plastering Company were charged with four felony counts of workers' compensation fraud, and Teofilo and Sara Oceguera were charged with two counts of workers' compensation insurance fraud, six counts of unemployment insurance charges and five counts of false income tax return charges. As reported in the news release, "if convicted, the O'Neills face a maximum of 10 years incarceration" and the Ocegueras "face a maximum of 18 years of incarceration."
The following comments can be attributed to David Murillo, Deputy Executive Director, California Professional Association of Specialty Contractors (CALPASC):
"CALPASC appreciates the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office for pursuing contractors who operate with an unmistakable intent to cheat the workers' compensation system and the state.
"The cooperation of local district attorney offices with state agencies demonstrates a level of commitment needed to bring flagrant violators to justice.
"Sending a message of significant jail time and payment of full restitution will help to deter other unscrupulous contractors from defrauding the public and level the construction playing field."
The following comments can be attributed to John Upshaw, Executive Director, Independent Roofing Contractors, of California, Inc.:
"Independent roofing contractors applaud the Santa Clara District Attorney's Office in collaborating with other state agencies to protect legitimate contractors in this state.
"Contractors who believe they don't have to pay their fair share of workers' compensation premiums deserve to face the full force of the law and pay for their premeditated actions."
SOURCE California Professional Association of Specialty Contractors (CALPASC)