Salinas man sentenced in workers’ comp fraud
Salinas >> Judge Pamela Butler sentenced Juan P. Gutierrez of Salinas Wednesday on two counts of making a material misrepresentation in order to obtain a lower workers’ compensation insurance and one count of willfully failing to file payroll tax returns with intent to evade tax, the Monterey County District Attorney’s Office said.
The court placed Gutierrez, 54, on felony probation for a stipulated term of 10 years, with restitution estimated at over $718,000. The court ordered Gutierrez to serve 250 days in county jail, pay over $20,000 in fines and be subject to a search by any probation or peace officer. Gutierrez formerly conducted business under the name of Costa Pacific Roofing.
An investigation revealed Gutierrez committed premium fraud from October 2010 through October 2013 by falsely reporting he had no employees and no payroll. In 2007, Gutierrez registered with the Employment Development Department as an employer and reported wages for only the first three quarters of the year. The account was later closed due to inactivity. Audits were completed by the California Department of Insurance and the Employment Development Department based upon documentation and evidence of employees’ wages during the charged time period.
Employers are required to register their businesses, report and pay taxes to the Employment Development Department for all employees. State law requires all employers to secure workers’ compensation insurance for their employees. A victim restitution order in the amount of $392,224 was ordered to be paid to the State Compensation Insurance Fund.