Ombudsman goes to court for $44k in backpay for worker

A MARINE services company that allegedly underpaid a Jamaican worker $44,000 while he repaired vessels in Brisbane is facing court action.

The Jamaican national worked for 10 months on a 457 visa for Sierra Fleet Services Pty Ltd, but was allegedly paid less than $5000 for his work.

The Fair Work Ombudsman on Tuesday reported it had begun legal action against the company and its general manager Harold Van Haltren over the underpayment of wages.

After the employee complained to the Ombudsman, it took action, after finding evidence that payslip laws were also allegedly breached.

Once the case comes before the Federal Circuit Court in late October, the company could face penalties up to $51,000 per contravention.

The FWO has also sought a court order for the employee to be backpaid some $44,902 allegedly owed. - APN NEWSDESK