LAS VEGAS - On any given weekend in the valley, you will find kids playing soccer. Many are part of the National Youth Sports League which hires young people at a rate of approximately $10 an hour to referee games.
Eder Mercado is one of those refs, and he's thankful for the work, but there was one problem when he first started. He wasn't getting paid.
"They would just tell me the check is not here. We are waiting on the checks from the regional office," he said.
Sixteen-year-old D'zree Posey worked for them as well and got the same story when she started asking for her checks.
"They were like, ‘It is coming next month. It is coming in two weeks. Just wait till' the 15th. It is coming.' But, we never got it," she said.
"I just don't understand how anyone can take advantage of a child," D'Zree's mother Tyia Correy-Posey said.
Frustrated , Tyia called 8 on Your Side for help. 8 on Your Side got the labor board involved and went directly to the league president. According to new owner Michael MacLeod, the league had recently been sold, and the previous owner left the league in shambles.
"It was actually in our contract that all those debts were supposed to be paid off which is a breach of contract," MacLeod said.
It wasn't just employees looking for their money. Vendors weren't paid either. MacLeod decided to do the right thing and paid all former employees, including D'zree and Eder. He still has a problem, however. MacLeod still has stacks of checks for former employees he can't reach.
"There's more out there that we're worried we don't even know about," he said.
8 on Your Side tried to get in touch with some of the former employees, but is still looking for more. If you have previously worked for National Youth Sports league and have not been paid, you can contact the new owner at 454-7863.