SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — A U.S. Department of Labor investigation found that a Silicon Valley technology company owed more than $40,000 in back wages to several severely underpaid foreign employees.

Electronics for Imaging, also known as EFI, paid as little as $1.21 in Indian rupees to employees brought over temporarily from India to work at the company’s U.S. Headquarters, according to U.S. Department of Labor officials.

The employees were technicians flown in from the employer’s office in Bangalore, India, to assist with installing the company’s network and server during a company headquarters move from Foster City to Fremont in late 2013.

Some of the employees worked as many as 122 hours per week, officials said.

“Business owners need to understand that when they bring employees here to the United States to work, they must pay them in accordance with U.S. labor laws,” Susana Blanco, district director for the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division said in a statement.

As a result of the investigation, EFI paid a total of $40,156 in back wages and liquidated damages to eight employees for up to two months of work, labor officials said.

The company also paid $3,520 in penalties because of the willful nature of the violations.

The Fair Labor Standards Act requires that covered employees be paid a minimum wage of $7.25 for all hours worked, plus time and one-half of their regular rates for hours worked beyond 40 per week. Employers must also maintain accurate time and payroll records.

© Copyright 2014 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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