More and more U.S. workers in California and across the nation are filing wage-theft law suits, saying their bosses illegally failed to pay wages that are rightfully owed to them.

A Fresno trucking company has been ordered to pay a truck driver’s family $3.5 million for the driver’s death.

According to the Merced Sun Star, a jury ruled that the trucking company was negligent in the death of the driver,  Amarjit Khunkhun, 43, who was killed in a truck fire four years ago on Interstate 40 near San Jon, New Mexico.

It was ruled that a transmission leak caused the GMG Trucking truck to catch on fire.

Jaswinder Gill and Avtar Gill own GMG Trucking.

During testimony, it was revealed that “Avtar Gill had exchanged trucks with Khunkhun during the early hours of March 23, 2010. About 135 miles later, the truck caught fire, killing him, Robins said,” the Merced Sun Star reported.

Khunkhun’s family attorney hired an independent expert to prove that the GMG Trucing violated federal regulations in the maintenance and inspections of their trucks.  Records showed that the trucking company was “aware of the transmission leak, but failed to fix the leak before it allowed Khunkhun to drive it.” the Merced Sun Star reported.

The jury awarded a $3.5 million judgement, however, the verdict was then reduced by 15% because Khunkhun was found “comparatively negligent.” Nearly $3 million will go to Khunkhun’s widow and children.

“Today a Fresno jury sent a clear message to the trucking industry that those companies who choose not to follow safety rules will be held accountable for the harm that they cause,” said Robins, of Santa Monica. He was assisted by attorney Hector Longoria of Houston and attorney Gurinder Mann, of San Jose.

Source:

Merced Sun Star

Fresno Bee

PR Newswire