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DOLE recommends filing of criminal charges vs. Kentex.

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has recommended the filing of criminal charges against Kentex Manufacturing Corp., the owner of the gutted factory in Valenzuela City, which killed 73 people.

In a statement, Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz disclosed she has already sent her recommendation to the Department of Justice (DOJ), which will consolidate all the charges to be filed by the government against the erring footwear company and its subcontractor, CJC Manpower Services.

"I have submitted a briefer on the violations of labor laws, detailing possible documentary evidence to support probable cause for the institution of criminal action against Kentex Manufacturing Corporation and CJC Manpower Services," Baldoz said.

Based on its investigation, DOLE found Kentex and CJC liable for underpayment of minimum wage and large-scale illegal recruitment. Both infractions are considered criminal acts since it violates provisions of the Labor Code.

In a related development, Baldoz also said DOLE-National Capital Region (DOLE-NCR) has demanded that Kentex pay its 52 workers around R1.4 million within the month or face possible sanctions.

The order was contained in the compliance order (CO) issued by DOLE-NCR director Alex Avila last Friday, which has already been served to the legal counsels of Kentex.

"Failure to pay said workers within 10 days shall cause the imposition of the penalty of double indemnity," Avila said.

Baldoz said the amount only covers the monetary entitlements of the beneficiaries for general labor standards and does not yet cover their claims from their criminal and civil cases.

INSPECTION REFORMS

Amid calls to overhaul its labor inspection system, DOLE announced companies must now comply with all the necessary fire safety regulations before they could pass its regular workplace inspections.

On June 22, Baldoz issued Memorandum No. 0915-26 mandating its labor inspectors to check the validity of the Fire Safety Inspection Certificate (FSIC) of establishments, which they would assess.

"You have to take note of the date of issuance of the FSIC, the issuing officer, and expiration date, and secure a copy," Baldoz said in the one-page memorandum.

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Title Annotation:Metro
Publication:Manila Bulletin
Date:Jul 1, 2015
Words:342
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