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The San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office announced that David Wayne Jenkins was sentenced to 364 days in custody, after a plea of no contest to charges related to his failure to pay farm workers at the hemp farm he was operating in Half Moon Bay.

Jenkins also pled no contest to charges that he failed to transmit taxes withheld from his employees’ wages and failed to maintain a workers’ compensation insurance policy.

He started a hemp farm in Half Moon Bay in December of 2019, and employed between 30 and 40 employees throughout 2020 under the business name Castle Management.

He paid employees every two weeks and withheld taxes from employees’ paychecks between April 2020 and Nov. 2020, but despite being warned to do so by his payroll service, he never registered Castle Management with the Employment Development Department, nor were any of the withheld taxes transferred to the Employment Development Department.

Because his business was failing financially, the defendant stopped paying his employees altogether at the beginning of December 2020.

At each pay period he provided employees with a variety of excuses for why they hadn’t been paid, and continued working the employees without pay until January 28, 2021, when investigators with the Labor Commissioner’s Office issued a stop work order.

After an extensive investigation conducted by the District Attorney’s Bureau of Investigation, the Labor Commissioner’s Office and Employment Development Department, Jenkins was charged in a felony complaint for theft of labor, tax evasion, and failure to maintain workers’ compensation insurance.

As part of an April plea agreement, Jenkins pled no contest to two counts of grand theft of labor as felonies, one count of failure to transmit taxes, a felony, and one count of failure to maintain workers’ compensation insurance, a misdemeanor. The remaining counts were dismissed with a waiver allowing the Court to consider them for purposes of sentencing and restitution.

Jenkins was ordered to serve 364 days in custody concurrent with a two-year prison term he will be serving in an unrelated case.

He was also ordered to pay restitution of $55,761 to Care West Insurance for unpaid workers’ compensation premiums, $500 for unpaid wages, $332 to three former employees for out-of-pocket costs due to injuries on the job, and $7,576 for unpaid tax withholdings.

He has already paid $127,944.78 in restitution for unpaid wages to 31 former employees, and $31,000.00 in unpaid taxes to the Employment Development Department.