US Department of Labor sues Cincinnati landscaping company

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - The US Department of Labor has filed a lawsuit against a Cincinnati landscaping company for what they say are willful and repeated violations of Fair Labor Standards Act.

The suit seeks to recover back wages and damages for 71 employees of Gregory Forrest Lester Inc., a landscaping company based in Cincinnati, owned by Gregory Lester. The suit claims Lester made willful and repeated violations of the minimum wage, overtime and record-keeping provisions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act.

The suit was filed after an investigation by the Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division.

Wage and Hour Division investigators determined that 71 employees are owed more than $88,000 in unpaid minimum wage and overtime compensation.  The department's suit asks the court to order the defendants to pay the entire sum owed.

"These defendants committed willful and repeated violations of the law, and they continue to do so by refusing to pay their employees minimum wage and overtime compensation for all hours of their hard work," said George Victory, director of the Wage and Hour Division's Cincinnati District Office. "This action demonstrates that the Labor Department will use all available enforcement tools to hold Gregory Forrest Lester Inc. and owner Gregory Lester accountable for their violations."

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