Guillermo Perez and Elma Maldonado, president and vice president of GP Roofing & Construction, LLC, in Palm Coast, Florida, were arrested last month for failing to comply with a March 30 civil contempt order stemming from nine OSHA inspections of GP worksites.

"This enforcement action demonstrates that OSHA can and will take action to ensure that standards are followed and that companies like GP Roofing that ignore multiple court orders requiring correction of violations and payment of penalties will be held accountable," said Kurt Petermeyer, the regional administrator for OSHA in Atlanta.

The violations

Those inspections resulted in citations being issued to the company between Aug. 3, 2011 and Oct. 29, 2012. The citations allege multiple willful, repeat and serious violations of OSHA fall-protectioneye and face protectionsafe-ladder, and other standards. On Aug. 7, 2013 the court granted the department's petition, enforcing the final orders of the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

Nearly $200K in fines

On Sept. 12, 2014, the department filed a Petition for Civil Contempt against GP Roofing, alleging that the company had failed to comply with the court's August 2013 order, based on evidence that the company continued to violate OSHA standards and failed to pay the penalties assessed. On March 30, 2015 the circuit court held the company and its officers in civil contempt; ordered the company to pay the outstanding penalties of $195,170 plus interest and fees; and also required the company to certify that it had corrected the violations.

The court's contempt order notified Mr. Perez and Ms. Maldonado that any noncompliance with the court's order would result in coercive sanctions, including incarceration.

Passport surrendered

After their arrest June 16, Perez and Maldonado were held in custody until their June 23, 2015 hearing. At the hearing they were released on signature bonds to make progress on purging the contempt. Conditions of their release included surrendering Perez's passport and limiting their travel to the state of Florida. Perez and Maldonado were also given 30 days to work on paying all outstanding penalties or demonstrating inability to pay and certifying that they have abated the OSHA violations cited in prior inspections. The final hearing is scheduled for Aug. 26, 2015.