Jose Gomez was working on the demolition crew at a building in Flushing, jackhammering a concrete slab, when the work site collapsed. The resulting fall left Gomez a paraplegic.
He filed suit for lost wages. That’s when his employers, subcontractor Prestige Carting and prime contractor Top 8 Construction, officially noted Gomez was in the country illegally, and was not entitled to such benefits.
Manhattan Judge Rolando Acosta smelled a rat. The construction firms didn’t mind exploiting Gomez’s illegal status to pay him below union scale and to take safety shortcuts on the work site, Acosta noted. They’ll have to continue overlooking his immigrant status and pay up.