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By Myron Levin, Stuart Silverstein and Lilly Fowler, FairWarning 

Fast-food workers in Seattle accused employers of wage theft last year.

Fast-food workers in Seattle accused employers of wage theft last year.

Karim Ameri allegedly decided to play hardball after learning that his Los Angeles recycling business was under investigation for failing to pay the minimum wage or overtime to workers putting in 60-hour weeks.

Court records say Ameri pressured employees of Recycling Innovations, a string of bottle-and-can redemption centers, to lie to federal officials about his company’s pay practices. He allegedly threatened to fire workers or report them to immigration authorities if they cooperated with U.S. Labor Department investigators.