Pizza parlor operator accused of bodily abusing employees


BOSTON (AP) — The operator of a Boston pizza parlor is accused of bodily and verbally abusing a longtime immigrant employee who could not legally work in the U.S., forcing the staff to operate extensive hours, and threatening to convert him more than to immigration authorities if he protested, federal prosecutors stated Thursday.

Stavros Papantoniadis, 47, who also goes by Steve, was billed with pressured labor according to a statement from the U.S. attorney’s place of work in Boston. He is getting held pending a detention hearing scheduled for Monday.

An email searching for comment was remaining with his federal general public defender.

Papantoniadis, who life in Westwood, owns and operates two Stash’s Pizza spots in Boston and formerly owned a number of other pizza parlors in suburban communities, prosecutors reported. No a person was readily available to talk about the scenario at the restaurant’s two locations.

U.S. Legal professional Rachael Rollins known as pressured labor a type of human trafficking.

“The allegations in this case are horrific,” she explained. “Nobody has the suitable to violently kick, slap, punch or choke any individual, and surely not an employer to an staff.”

Even though he only faces one charge, he victimized at least seven staff members, according to court paperwork.

He deliberately recruited workers who had been not in the U.S. legally and therefore not approved to get the job done, and paid them dollars, authorities said.

Just one employee, a native of a North African country, allegedly worked as significantly as 119 several hours a 7 days at Stash’s Pizza from 2001 to 2015, endured derogatory opinions about his religion, and was violently attacked by his employer. The employee was the moment kicked so difficult in the genitals by Papantoniadis that he demanded surgery, prosecutors mentioned. On a different occasion, Papantoniadis hit the employee in the mouth and broke some tooth, prosecutors mentioned.

The employee was so terrified that he retained operating at Stash’s Pizza, prosecutors claimed.

A further staff from El Salvador who was not a authorized resident of the U.S. advised investigators that he labored 80 hrs for every week, 7 days a week and was not compensated time beyond regulation. He claimed possessing meals thrown at him and staying denied time off to see a health practitioner for major healthcare challenges.

The employee, who is gay, stated Papantoniadis also built derogatory remarks about his sexual orientation.

This is not the initial time Papantoniadis has been in federal court. In 2017 he was accused of violating federal least wage, extra time, and kid labor legislation, in accordance to federal courtroom records. In that situation he agreed to pay $330,000 in back wages and extra time.

The investigation is ongoing and federal investigators questioned any individual who thinks they might have been a sufferer to contact them.


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