ROCHESTER, Minn. (AP) — A group of Rochester-area construction workers are pursuing a wage theft claim, testing a new state law that aims to clamp down on companies that don’t pay for labor.

Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry officials say the law, which went into effect July 1, doubles the amount of state investigators probing wage theft cases, which will increase site examinations. Officials say an estimated $11.9 million is kept from 39,000 Minnesota workers every year.

The Star Tribune reports that workers allege Ed Lunn Construction duped them out of thousands of dollars in wages after working the majority of 2018 on a $40 million, city-funded affordable housing project that’s now filling with residents.

Lunn denies any culpability, contending a subcontractor employed the men.

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