HOUSTON – Federal charges have been filed against Amy Fisher, 36, of Houston, alleging she committed perjury during a civil deposition and trial, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson.
The indictment was returned under seal April 29, 2015, and unsealed yesterday upon her arrest. She is expected to make her initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Frances Stacey at 10:00 a.m. today.
“The integrity of the judicial system requires truthfulness from all witnesses in legal matters in order for justice to prevail,” said Magidson. “When perjury allegations are referred to us, we work closely with investigators to determine whether to seek federal criminal charges. We do not take allegations of perjury lightly in any proceeding – civil or criminal – and will pursue those that attempt to undermine the reliability of our legal processes.”
According to the allegations in the indictment, Fisher committed perjury on Nov. 17, 2014, during her deposition and trial testimony related to the civil trial of Lipinski et. al. v. Meritage Co., Civil Action No. H-10-CV-605.
The Meritage case was a Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) case that went to trial in Houston in November 2014. One of the primary issues during trial was whether or not Meritage Corporation had properly classified its sales people as “outside salesmen” who are exempt from the FLSA’s overtime and a minimum wage requirements. Plaintiffs, who were all employed as sales associates for Meritage Corporation, argued the company misclassified them as “outside salesmen” to avoid paying minimum wage and overtime pay.
One of the key issues during the civil trial was determining how much time Meritage sales associates spent in sales activity outside of the sales office. Fisher was the only Meritage sales associate who testified on behalf of the corporation. The deposition and trial, which both occurred on Nov. 17, 2014, focused on what activities Fisher performed outside of her sales office.
The indictment alleges that during those proceedings, Fisher was questioned regarding her sales activity that occurred on Nov. 16, 2014, the preceding work day. Fisher is charged with committing perjury by falsely testifying as to her specific actions on that day.
If convicted, Fisher faces up to five years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 fine.
This case is being investigated by the FBI. Assistant U.S. Attorney Julie Searle is prosecuting the case.
An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.