Three south Auckland superettes are being fined $57,000 for exploiting migrant workers by failing to pay minimum wage and failing to provide annual leave and public holidays.
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) said the breaches also included failure to keep and maintain compliant wages, time, holiday and leave records as well as failure to provide an employment agreement.
The Employment Relations Authority (ERA) has ordered the director of the stores Balwnder Singh and his wife Jaswinder Kaur to pay $15,000 and $500 respectively in penalties.
This was on top of $90,000 the companies, Saloni Enterprises Limited, Saloni Holdings Limited, and B Enterprises Limited had previously been ordered to pay to two former employees in owed wage and holiday pay.
Labour Inspectorate regional manager Loua Ward says the employers deliberately took advantage of migrant workers who relied on them for support in regards to their immigration status.
"The ERA noted that these were some of the most serious conceivable breaches and that they were intentional.
"The employers took advantage of their employees’ vulnerable position as migrant workers. They breached legal requirements which are in place to make sure all workers in New Zealand are treated fairly."
Ward said Singh also tried to "undermine" the investigation by "providing false information and denying the allegations".
The companies now face a stand-down period of 24 months from the ability to support a visa application.