Security guard patrolling commercial building

Union City security firm accused of cheating workers out of $800,000 in wages

One of the most common types of labor law violations in California is wage theft. Wage theft occurs when an employer deliberately fails to pay workers their wages in full. Along with regular wages, this includes overtime pay, sales commissions and earned tips. There are many other forms of wage theft, ranging from not paying workers premiums for missed meal and rest breaks to withholding a final paycheck.

Seemingly small instances of unpaid wages can add up to a substantial amount over time. Because wage theft is a criminal offense in California, law enforcement may get involved in serious cases. Along with taking legal action to recover their owed wages, workers who experience wage theft can in theory report their employer to legal authorities.  

The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office recently cracked down on a Union City security company for allegedly cheating workers out of hundreds of thousands of dollars in regular pay and overtime wages. The business owners are facing multiple felony charges for their unlawful labor practices.

The wage theft was so serious that the office described it as “egregious.” Alameda County prosecutors first launched an investigation into Alfa Private Security Services in December 2021. They found that business owners Ferooz Nangeyali and Alejandra Nangeyali allegedly owed 87 employees more than $800,000 in wages.

Additionally, prosecutors said the security firm owners allegedly committed workers’ compensation fraud totaling $88,000. Both Ferooz Nangeyali and Alejandra Nangeyali are facing felony charges for wage theft and insurance fraud. Ferooz Nangeyali is also facing separate charges for possession of homemade guns. He allegedly gave the firearms to certain workers even though they were not licensed to carry guns and had not received training on how to use them.

However, relatively few prosecutors have undertaken such cases and a civil lawsuit to recover damages remains the most common way for employees to recover what they are owed.  Some employers fail to pay workers properly to gain an unfair business advantage over their competitors. When profits are prioritized, it is hard-working employees who suffer the consequences. Workers who are cheated out of their earned wages have the right to file a wage claim with the California Labor Commissioner or bring a wage and hour lawsuit against their employer.

If you suspect you have been subjected to wage theft, speaking to an experienced employment lawyer can provide some clarity on your legal options. You may be able to recover your unpaid wages and hold your employer accountable for the wage theft.  The San Francisco wage and hour attorneys at McCormack Law Firm have more than 20 years of experience helping workers across all types of industries recover the wages they are owed. If your employer has willingly withheld your wages, you have important rights.

We recognize that understanding which California wage and hour laws apply to you can be confusing. Our lawyers are available to answer all your questions and explore ways in which to resolve your wage dispute. Contact McCormack Law Firm for a free case evaluation to learn more. Call 415.925.5161 today or use our online form.

Read more

Workers sorting produce in warehouse

Misclassified Delivery Drivers Get $650,000 in Back Wages from Romero’s Food Products

A food manufacturer in Santa Fe Springs, California, is on the hook for $650,000 after the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) efforts to recover back wages for a group of misclassified delivery…

Retail working in a mask standing behind an open sign

Marin County Home Consignment Center Worker Wins $1.3 Million in COVID-19 Whistleblower Lawsuit

People often think of whistleblowing in relation to exposing a major scandal or government wrongdoing. However, being a whistleblower does not always have to be so dramatic in the context of workplace…

Restaurant workers discussing their employer

Sacramento Restaurant Uses Fake Priest to Get Workers to Confess Wrongdoing

Even though workplace retaliation is unlawful, employers sometimes try to take advantage of workers who do not know or understand their rights. Examples of retaliation include threatening to report employees to immigration…

Asian tech worker working late at night

Silicon Valley Firm Faces $20 Million Lawsuit Over Anti-Asian Discrimination

An Asian former employee of a Silicon Valley tech firm is seeking $20 million in damages after being fired due to the company’s alleged “culture of prejudice against Asians.” He filed a…