Photo via Pixabay
Photo via Pixabay

The owners of a Long Beach trucking company were released on their own recognizance while awaiting arraignment May 16 on charges that they under-reported the firm’s payroll by $4.7 million over a four-year period.

Alvin Shih Chen, 54, and Fiona Chen, 46, were ordered to surrender their passports within 24 hours.

The defendants — who co-own Metro Worldwide Inc. — are each charged with 18 counts of workers’ compensation fraud and five counts of failing to pay taxes.

The couple are accused of reporting a payroll of nearly $3 million to the State Compensation Insurance Fund between 2009 and 2013 when the actual amount was allegedly $7.6 million.

Alvin Chen’s attorney, Amanda R. Touchton, said Thursday outside court, “Alvin and Fiona are respected business people and family-oriented private people who have never been accused of any wrongdoing before, and this is a case that involves the classification of workers.”

She called it a complicated issue that involves unsettled law.

–City News Service

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