4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Husband and wife cheated workers' compensation

Indicted for hiding the existence of 800 hotel workers

Hyok "Steven" Kwon and Woo Hui "Stephanie" Kwon
Hyok "Steven" Kwon and Woo Hui "Stephanie" Kwon

Hyok "Steven" Kwon and his wife, Woo Hui "Stephanie" Kwon, were sentenced to prison yesterday (March 15) for concocting and carrying out a complicated scheme to avoid paying workers' compensation insurance premiums and employment taxes for their janitorial company, Irvine-based Good Neighbor Services. He was sentenced to eight years in custody and she got four years and eight months. Each has been ordered to pay $5 million restitution to insurance carriers and the California Employment Development Department.

They were indicted in December for hiding the existence of 800 hotel workers and thereby evading personnel-related taxes. At the time of the indictment, their caper was considered the largest insurance premium fraud in San Diego history.

Among the hotels serviced by the company were the Hotel Del Coronado, Grand Del Mar, La Costa Resort & Spa, Loews Coronado, and L'Auberge Del Mar.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Chef Budda Blasian Soul Food is getting a food truck

The family-operated pop-up has thrived on word of mouth, and sumptuous fried chicken
Next Article

The Nutcracker: old traditions, new names

Goodbye, California Ballet, hello, Golden State
Hyok "Steven" Kwon and Woo Hui "Stephanie" Kwon
Hyok "Steven" Kwon and Woo Hui "Stephanie" Kwon

Hyok "Steven" Kwon and his wife, Woo Hui "Stephanie" Kwon, were sentenced to prison yesterday (March 15) for concocting and carrying out a complicated scheme to avoid paying workers' compensation insurance premiums and employment taxes for their janitorial company, Irvine-based Good Neighbor Services. He was sentenced to eight years in custody and she got four years and eight months. Each has been ordered to pay $5 million restitution to insurance carriers and the California Employment Development Department.

They were indicted in December for hiding the existence of 800 hotel workers and thereby evading personnel-related taxes. At the time of the indictment, their caper was considered the largest insurance premium fraud in San Diego history.

Among the hotels serviced by the company were the Hotel Del Coronado, Grand Del Mar, La Costa Resort & Spa, Loews Coronado, and L'Auberge Del Mar.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Another generation discovers Perry’s Cafe

Large portions of breakfast staples stand out beneath the freeway
Next Article

The masterful Meistersinger singers

The best six hours I've spent in an opera house
Comments
37

The state and DA's are getting really pixxy about people who cheat on Workers Comp. Many years ago a roofing contractor who was underpaying (but still paying quite a lot) got sentenced to about three years for his crime, and I think he pleaded guilty.

March 16, 2017

Roofing is the most costly insurance. It's about one-to-one pay in for the hourly rate of a journeyman roofer. A company paying a roofer $20 an hour is also paying about $20 an hour in Worker's Comp. Roofing is also one of the most dangerous trades.

March 16, 2017

Ponzi: It's my understanding that roofing is not only dangerous, it's a strain on the body. Carpet layers suffer from body problems, too. Best, Don Bauder

March 16, 2017

That was why, I'm certain, that the guy I mention decided to cheat. Your profit margin on jobs might depend upon it. Yeah, it's dangerous and nasty. Hot sun, nail guns, and falling off the roof all add up to hazardous duty.

March 16, 2017

Visduh: I think law enforcers should battle cheating on workers comp. It's not a victimless crime. Best, Don Bauder

March 16, 2017

This could not have gone on for long or am I wrong. Wouldn't these employees have been filing 1040's looking for refunds or earned income credits? Wouldn't they be pestering Kwon for W-2s or 1099s. Wouldn't the state and the IRS have been looking for their taxes?

March 16, 2017

Uh, no. Workers Compensation Insurance has no connection to employee tax returns. The crunch would come when the employee is injured, perhaps seriously, and shows up at a clinic or hospital, only to learn he/she has no record of coverage, and no sort of identification from an insurance company vouching for coverage. This is a levy paid by the employer, not the employee, and the sort of safeguard you describe isn't there. The way the fraudsters pull this off is with immigrants who have no concept of disability insurance, or many of whom are here illegally. They get hurt, they suck it up. Nobody knows nuthin'.

March 16, 2017

JustWondering: I don't know the answer to your question, but the charge against these people is hiding the existence of these workers. Best, Don Bauder

March 16, 2017

Visduh: Your explanation appears to be plausible. It appears to be one more instance of abuse of immigrants. Best, Don Bauder

March 16, 2017

by immigrants ?

March 17, 2017

Murphyjunk: I don't know if the pair headed for prison are immigrants. Best, Don Bauder

March 17, 2017

Unless roofer's insurance covers everything, the roofers are getting humped by the insurance industry. The fact that insurers are able to keep their "statistics" secret is an abomination. Of course, collusion, especially between "government" and industry is not strained. As we move dumbly toward oligarchy or monarchy, it should be no surprise that tar vapor-addled roofers are the bait fish (or shiny objects) used to lure us away from the mega-crimes.

March 16, 2017

Flapper: The quality of mercy is not strained. Are roofers really addled by tar vapor? Best, Don Bauder

March 17, 2017

Get ALL the colluders, not just the dummest.

March 17, 2017

Flapper: If we nailed everybody who employ collusion in their lives, the number of people in prison would be triple the number on the outside. Best, Don Bauder

March 17, 2017

The quality of cynicism is terribly strained.

March 17, 2017

Flapper: Yes, I apologize for that one. I was straining -- definitely trying too hard. Best, Don Bauder

March 17, 2017

D.A. Bonnie Dumanis has billboards and TV commercials directed at Workers Compensation fraud.

This is the TV commercial that runs on local stations:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=20pNjDPxuBs

March 17, 2017

A couple decades ago, the workers comp rates in California were the highest in the nation, placing in-state employers at a disadvantage with out-of-state competitors. (That was far from the only disadvantage of doing business in this state.) More recently there have been "reforms" made to WC, and now I don't hear or see the intense complaints. But some occupations, such as construction of all kinds, and some aspects of manufacturing have shockingly high rates. Employers in this state have to be savvy about all the costs of employing, where failure to anticipate things like WC and unemployment can be devastating. This is not a time and a place when you can just hire a person or two or three and figure that their gross income is about all you'll be paying.

When I was running an accounting department, I remember the auditors from the workers comp carrier being very good at spotting errors. But they based their findings on complete and accurate payroll records. I'd suppose these cheaters actually had managed to run a large payroll that never showed up anywhere around an auditor.

March 18, 2017

Visduh: That's what these two were doing: hiding their workers and thereby dodging workers comp. Best, Don Bauder

March 19, 2017

Many businesses do not hire auditors. Many businesses do not even bother with bookkeepers. They just run their business out of a checkbook and file false reports to taxing authorities.

March 22, 2017

Ponzi: The insurance companies should monetarily contribute to law enforcement's efforts to jail those who cheat insurance companies. Similarly, criminal law enforcement works hard to catch those who cheat casinos. The casinos should pay much of the costs of such investigations. Best, Don Bauder

March 19, 2017

Ponzi: The ad didn't move me. How about you? Best, Don Bauder

March 22, 2017

Terryfying!

March 17, 2017

Flapper: Are inaccurate payroll records actually "terrifying?" Save that word for the administration now in Washington, D.C. Best, Don Bauder

March 19, 2017

Twits on Twitter?

March 21, 2017

Flapper: I know of one twit who tweets. Best, Don Bauder

March 22, 2017

Seem ta me that short for twitter should be "twit."

March 22, 2017

Flapper: When I was writing for the U-T, I coined a word: "nitpwicked." It's being nitpicked by a nitwit. And you're right: short for twitter should be "twit." Best, Don Bauder

March 23, 2017

That nitwit is a pwick alright.

March 23, 2017

Flapper: True. Best, Don Bauder

March 24, 2017

And I shoulda said that short for one who blows off on twitter is, to wit, a twitterer. Maybe the short for should have two "t's?" Twitt?

And as the moving pixel twit, and having twit, moved on . . . (not soon enough)

March 23, 2017

Flapper: Decades ago, the Chicago Cubs had a second baseman named Twig Terwilliger. That was long before twitter. Best, Don Bauder

March 24, 2017

Back then, if you didn't go by your nickname, you were nobody.

March 24, 2017

Forest Green: I am not sure I understand your statement, but I do think that in workers comp Obamacare, and Medicare, for example, insurance companies make out like bandits. Best, Don Bauder

March 23, 2017

Most insurance companies make out well. It's like gambling, and they are the house. You pay a premium betting something bad will happen, they accept your premium betting it won't happen. Their underwriting secrets and lobbying power keep them in the money.

March 23, 2017

Ponzi: Excellent analogy. Then insurance companies also have actuaries in their employ. Best, Don Bauder

March 23, 2017

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close