Businesswoman convicted for VNPF non-payment

A female expatriate businesswoman has been convicted by the Magistrates Court after she failed to pay her employees their Vanuatu National Provident Fund (VNPF) contributions for sometimes.

Michelle Borie, the owner of Tropicool or Vaneurop admitted to two counts of failure to pay the surcharges as provided under the VNPF Act [CAP 189].

She also admitted one count of failing to pay board employee’s monthly contributions under section 26 (1) contrary to section 50 (1) (c) of the VNPF Act.

The office of Public Prosecution said that Borie denied three other similar counts.

The matter was listed to be tried on December 5, 2015 with seven prosecution witnesses ready to testify.

Mrs Borie admitted that she failed to pay more than VT338,000 to Enneth Tom who was one of her employees some years ago.

Reports said that she paid her workers’ VNPF surcharges since her company began operation until she started to fail on March 31, 2015 up to August 31, 2018.

She admitted that she also failed to pay Mrs Tom and Nelly Victik the monthly contribution starting from February 1, 2015 up to August 31, 2018 owing each of them an amount of more than VT98,000.

But the businesswoman denied owing any money to longtime former employee Daniel Naiou monthly contribution from June 1, 2009 to August 13, 2017 an amount of more than VT259,000.

She also denied owing more than VT2.2 million to Mr Naiou the surcharges of the failed monthly contributions as her employee since July 1, 2009 to August 2017.

Mrs Borie denied an additional alleged amount of more than VT175,000 owed to Mrs Tom through failed contribution.

Prosecution said that they are ready to bring Mrs Borie to court on the charges that she has denied.

They said that they have a significant volume of evidences filed in respect of the charges denied.

They said that during the investigation, they asked Mrs Borie to provide all her payouts payrolls and other documents of registration she said that she left them back in Indonesia.

They said that she only provided records of payroll for this year but with no sign of any VNPF contributions to her employee.

The case has been investigated by the VNPF Inspectors and later with the help of a Police officer during caution.

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