Landscaper Pleads Guilty For Failure To Pay Employees

Boston, MA (CompNewsNetwork) - A Framingham landscaper has pled guilty to charges that he failed to pay wages to employees.  Denio Pinho, age 41, owner of Pinho Landscaping, located in Framingham, pled guilty in Framingham District Court to the charge of Failure to Pay Wages.  Following a change of plea from not guilty to guilty, Framingham District Court Judge Robert Greco sentenced Pinho to six months of probation and ordered him to pay nearly $5,000 in restitution.

In March and May 2007, the Attorney General's Office began an investigation into Pinho's business practices after two employees filed complaints with the Attorney General's Fair Labor Division. The employees alleged that Pinho Landscaping and its owner failed to pay them for work they performed at private residences in Wellesley from March through December 2006.  Investigators requested payroll records from Pinho, who refused to produce the records.  Authorities then filed a complaint against Pinho in Framingham District Court on November 27, 2007.

Pinho was arraigned in Framingham District Court on January 14, 2008, at which time he pled not guilty and was released on personal recognizance.  On Tuesday, December 9, 2008, Pinho entered a change of plea from not guilty to guilty in Framingham District Court. Judge Greco sentenced Pinho to six months probation and ordered that he pay the two employees $4,906 in restitution. 

The Attorney General's Fair Labor Division is responsible for enforcing the minimum wage and overtime laws, and the payment of wages laws in the Commonwealth.  Workers who feel that these laws have been violated in their workplace are encouraged to call the Attorney General's Fair Labor Hotline at (617) 727-3465.  More information about the wage and hour laws is also available in multiple languages at the Attorney General's Workplace Rights website:  

The case was prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Thomas Johnson with assistance from Inspector Jeffrey Mahoney and Victim Witness Advocate Liz Valadao, all of Attorney General Martha Coakley's Fair Labor Division.

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