Stoneacre Hospitality faces federally filed wage theft lawsuit

THE OWNERS of Stoneacre Hospitality restaurants are being sued by the U.S. Department of Labor for alleged wage theft and related offenses. / PBN PHOTO ANNE EWING

NEWPORT The owners of Stoneacre Hospitality restaurants are being sued by the U.S. Department of Labor for alleged wage theft and related offenses.

A complaint filed by U.S. Secretary of Labor Martin J. Walsh in Rhode Island’s federal district court on Aug. 4 alleges that Kale Stems, LLC, Chive Blossom, LLC, and Stoneacre Hospitality owners Christopher Bender and David Crowell carried out four violations of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act from April 2016 through at least January 2021.

Stoneacre Hospitality comprises Stoneacre Brasserie, Stoneacre Garden and Stoneacre Picnics and the now-closed Stoneacre Tapas.

In a complaint, Walsh alleges that the restaurant owners did not pay employees minimum wage and overtime premium, kept employee tips, incorrectly classified employees as exempt from overtime pay, and did not keep accurate records for employees.

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The lawsuit calls for the owners to recover lost tips and wages, in addition to liquidated damages, for the affected employees.

Stoneacre did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Walsh has requested a jury trial to address the allegations.

Jacquelyn Voghel is a PBN staff writer. You may reach her at Voghel@PBN.com.

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