Okay, thanks for the info.
If you can get this other employee to agree to testify that the employer forced the employee to pay $100 out of a paycheck in order to keep his job, and if you can get a witness to confirm (or using a hidden tape recorder) that your supervisor will put you back on your original work schedule if you pay $100 to the employer, then that is a violation of Labor Code 221; 224 and Penal Code 518 (extortion).
This is actually a big
deal. What you are describing is a criminal act by the employer. Even a $100 demand is a crime, because it's in exchange for the right to work. And, it's coercive, because it requires that you effectively admit to a wrongful act that you did not allegedly commit.
If you can get the evidence I describe, then you can complain to the DLSE (click here
). You could also contact your county district attorney and/or the sheriff's white-collar crime unit. Since the amount of money is small, law enforcement may not be particularly interested -- but if they sense that this is a pattern of conduct by the employer, and other employees have been similarly penalized, then the employer could find himself charged with criminal extortion, and that may end this nonsense forever.
Additionally, you are protected under California law from retaliation by the employer, after you actually make a complaint to DLSE or any other law enforcement agency -- even if it turns out that there is no criminal violation of law. Cal. Labor Code 1102.5.
Hope this helps.