AN employment contractor embroiled in a payment dispute with about 100 cherry pickers could be investigated by police for fraud after wages cheques issued by the company bounced.
The Central Western Daily understands at least four pickers have been left empty handed after cheques issued by Pasifika Resources over the past month were dishonoured.
The mother of one picker, who declined to be named, said her daughter was owed six weeks worth of pay totalling $800 from Pasifika.
She is making an official statement to police about the fraudulent cheques when she returns to Orange on Monday.
“My daughter wants to go and study but she has nothing to show for all those 5am mornings,” she said.
“Some of them [the pickers] are owed thousands.
“I think it’s fraud especially after I tried to contact [Pasifika] and they don’t respond.”
Nadege Gameiro worked in the office with Pasifika and is owed almost $2500.
Backpackers Tangy Bailbled and Clement Chevreau are owed more than $1100 after cheques from Pasifika were dishonoured.
Ms Gamerio is leading a push against Pasifika, which is under investigation by the Fair Work Ombudsman after numerous complaints from workers.
A social media group she started, calling for unpaid pickers to unite and take their complaints to the ombudsman, has so far attracted 75 members.
“I think [the ombudsman] will receive a lot of complaining this week because I gave all the pickers the information they needed,” she said.
“I worked in the office with this company so I will not give up this story.”
Ms Gameiro has passed on all the information she had on her computer to the ombudsman including the lug record, and the names, tax file numbers, and contact details of about 300 pickers who worked at the Nashdale orchard.
She said pickers who worked with Pasifika at farms in Mudgee and Cudal had also been stung by the company.
Anna Berry from Pasifika Resources has not returned calls for comment over the past three weeks.
The CWD understands she has returned to Vanuatu.