Higher-ups of two Bay Area construction companies were arraigned on Friday for allegedly conspiring to misclassify workers so they could avoid paying compensation insurance and payroll taxes, announced the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office.

Three individuals from Atlas Pavers in Concord are facing charges for allegedly paying over $12 million to misclassified and unlicensed construction crews from 2016 to 2019. The complaint, filed on March 8, also alleged that 57-year-old Candido Silva, 42-year-old Itamar De Morais Junior, and 42-year-old Irma Ruiz-Alarcon discussed plans to avoid insurance with the State Compensation Insurance Fund, since it would require an audit of their records.

Additionally, 62-year-old Christopher Ray Vieira and 60-year-old Gilbert Roland Guiotti of Centrox Construction of San Bruno were charged for allegedly operating their company as a “shell company” to route millions of dollars to subcontractors for Atlas Pavers and other companies. The two have been charged with the unlawful use of their contracting license to assist in payments for unlicensed, misclassified subcontractor construction crews, according to the DA.

“Prosecuting insurance fraud is about protecting workers, holding those responsible accountable, and stopping unlawful business schemes,” said District Attorney Diana Becton.

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