LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel is establishing a special unit in her office to investigate payroll fraud and the misclassification of workers by "shady" businesses.

The Democrat, who announced the initiative Monday, says payroll and tax fraud have gone under the radar for far too long. She says her office will be "as aggressive as possible" cracking down on businesses that cheat workers of wages and dodge taxes.

Nessel's announcement was made in conjunction with Democratic lawmakers who plan to propose bills that would increase penalties for payroll theft, strengthen whistleblower protections and require companies to pay back wages if money is owed to workers.

Nessel's office says wage theft occurs most often in industries such as construction, landscaping, janitorial services and child care.

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