North Jersey restaurant owner failed to cooperate with look at pay practices, DOL says

Kimberly Redmond//December 16, 2022

North Jersey restaurant owner failed to cooperate with look at pay practices, DOL says

Kimberly Redmond//December 16, 2022

The owner of Manhattan Halal Gyro King LLC, a three-restaurant chain in North Jersey, is facing charges after authorities say he failed to cooperate with a federal probe into pay practices.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), Samad Uddin, also known as Saman Khan, was arrested by U.S. Marshals Dec. 15 for not providing the Wage of Hour Division with information requested as part of a compliance investigation that began in November 2020.

After an administrative subpoena was issued in December 2020, Uddin did not supply documents and testimony under oath as requested by the division to determine if his pay practices complied with the Fair Labor Standards Act, the department said.

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In response, the DOL’s Office of the Solicitor took several actions in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, including: obtaining a May 2021 court order compelling Uddin to comply with the administrative subpoena and filing a motion asking the court to find him in civil contempt and fine him for non-compliance.

Additionally, the regional solicitor was granted a court order in March 2022 that increased fines to $1,000 a day, sought payment of the existing $63,000 in fines, and demanded Uddin comply with the administrative subpoena within a week or face the possibility of being arrested by federal authorities, the DOL said.

The regional solicitor also requested to have the employer taken into custody and remain there until he complied with the subpoena and the March 2022 request, which the court approved Dec. 12, according to the DOL.

Incorporated in 2018, Manhattan Halal Gyro King has locations in Teaneck, Elmwood Park and Paterson, offering dine-in, delivery and catering services.

Attempts to reach Uddin for comment were unsuccessful late Thursday afternoon and it is unclear if he has legal representation.

In a statement, Wage and Hour Division Regional Administrator Mark Watson Jr. in Philadelphia, said the DOL “must have access to an employer’s records to ensure their business’ pay practices and other operations comply with regulations in the Fair Labor Standards Act. Employers cannot avoid their legal responsibilities by refusing to cooperate with investigators and withholding records they request.”