A Melbourne boss labelled the Fair Work Ombudsman "mafia, Nazi, communists" before he and his laser engineering company were fined $25,000 for unfair dismissal.
MCE Lasers and the majority shareholder, Zoran Crvenkovic, were fined $25,920 in the Federal Circuit Court after refusing to pay out an Iranian worker sacked in 2015, the Fair Work Ombudsman said on Monday.
The former employee - who had been dismissed via email - was awarded compensation and superannuation worth $27,124 in 2015 but had been paid nothing.
In Federal Circuit Court Judge Joshua Wilson's reasons for judgment, he said Mr Crvenkovic said he'd had enough when the FWO's lawyer contacted him.
"I'm not coming. I'm not responding, not interested. I am refusing it. Fair Work are mafia, Nazi, communists," Mr Crvenkovic told the FWO's lawyer, the judgment shows.
Judge Wilson said an employer is not entitled to unilaterally determine to ignore Fair Work's orders.
Fair Work wanted the company fined $86,000 and Mr Crvenkovic fined $17,280 but Judge Wilson said that was "wholly disproportionate" to the original compensation.
He instead imposed penalties nearly equal to the compensation, and awarded costs of $4700 against Mr Crvenkovic.
Acting Fair Work Ombudsman Michael Campbell said compliance with workplace laws isn't optional.
"All workplace participants need to understand that we will take action against those that choose to flout the law - and that there will be consequences for doing so," he said in a statement.