Unpaid Chinese Workers In CNMI Receive Wages, To Return Home

Casino construction workers illegally entered Commonwealth to work for Gold Mantis

By Erwin Encinares 

SAIPAN, CNMI (Saipan Tribune, May 16, 2017) – More than 90 unpaid workers of Gold Mantis Construction Decoration (CNMI), LLC have finally received their wages and placement fees and are scheduled to go back to China today at 4am.

According to sources, all of the protesters’ families have confirmed that their unpaid wages have already been deposited in their Chinese bank accounts, with taxes deducted. That demand is what remained for the workers to leave the CNMI after reportedly being brought in illegally under a parole visa and false promises made by a third party recruiter in China.

Gold Mantis promised the workers that their unpaid wages, along with a reimbursement of their placement fees, minus local taxes, would be deposited in their Chinese bank accounts by 10am yesterday. As of 5pm yesterday, it was reportedly confirmed that Gold Mantis has already deposited the amounts.

The workers were also informed that they would be picked up at 12am last night for departure to China at 4am today. Each worker also expect to receive $1,600 upon departure, as promised by Gold Mantis.

Although Gold Mantis reportedly did not give the workers their plane tickets prior to leaving for the Francisco C. Ada-Saipan International Airport, the workers were promised that they would get their tickets as they board the plane, along with the promised $1,600. The workers were reportedly scheduled to be picked up from their dormitories last night.

The confirmation of family members that Gold Mantis had already deposited their unpaid wages was the workers’ last demand before going back to China.

Having entered the CNMI to work for Gold Mantis under parole authority, the workers were reportedly told to stop working when a worker fell to his death from a four-storey scaffold on March 22, 2017. Since then, the workers have gone without both work and pay, leading to multiple protests.

An earlier statement from a representative of Gold Mantis named Robert Gemmill said that the company has been “providing and is continuing to provide humanitarian aid to as many as 91 individuals who we understand were, until recently, working on the Imperial Pacific hotel and casino project.”

The statement claimed Gold Mantis has been working with both CNMI and U.S. government authorities as well as Karidat “with respect to the logistics of providing this humanitarian aid, which includes food, water, and lodging.”

Imperial Pacific International (CNMI) LLC, the company that hired Gold Mantis, said in its most recent statement that it “denounces in the strongest terms harboring of illegal workers by some of its contractors [and] subcontractors and will continue to work with authorities in the amicable resolution of issues.”

Gold Mantis is not the only contractor or subcontractor that is accused of illegally harboring aliens as well as failing to pay them wages. It was previously reported that MCC International has been committing the same acts. An arrest warrant was issued last April 4, 2017, after a complaint charged MCC project manager Yuqing Zhao and MCC electrician Pei Ruan with the unlawful employment of aliens and bringing in and harboring certain aliens.

Representatives of Beilida Overseas (CNMI), another construction company that is allegedly faces the same charge as MCC, were also arrested. Xiufang Qi and Wencai Guo of Beilida were stopped and arrested last April 5 at the Saipan airport as they were attempting to leave the CNMI.

Saipan Tribune
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