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Mama Mexico hit with labor lawsuit

NEW YORK The owners of Mama Mexico Restaurants, a three-unit chain of upscale casual Mexican restaurants located in midtown Manhattan and Englewood, N.J., have been sued for violating state labor laws by allegedly withholding employee wages and tips, plaintiff attorneys said Tuesday.

The suit, which seeks class-action status, was filed in the U.S. District Court of New York on behalf of seven current and former workers. It alleges that Mama Mexico, which is run by chief executive Juan Rojas Campos, an immigrant when he founded the company, withheld minimum wages, overtime compensation and misappropriated employee tips.

Officials for Mama Mexico Restaurants declined comment.

“While Rojas Campos has been touted as exemplifying the American dream, his restaurants have denied workers minimum wages and overtime pay for the many hours they worked and, in some cases, failed to pay these workers any wages at all,” the lawsuit contended.

Representatives for Outten & Golden LLP and Fitapelli & Schaffer LLP, the attorneys representing the plaintiffs, said the suit seeks to recover minimum wages, overtime compensation, misappropriated tips and other wages for servers, bussers, runners, bartenders and other hourly foodservice workers who have worked at Mama Mexico restaurants.

The complaint also includes individual claims for retaliation, pregnancy discrimination, hostile work environment and assault and battery.

In addition to Campos, the defendants in the case are Plaza Mexico Inc., Piramides Mayas Inc., Mama Mexico Midtown Realty LLC, Shaddai Inc., Mama Mexico Englewood Realty LLC, Vincente Rojas, Miguel Rojas, Laura Chavez, Jose Lumbardi and Freddy Raymondi.

Contact Elissa Elan at [email protected].

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