To the surprise of absolutely no one, it turns out lots of weird sh*t goes down at Taco Bell. Last month, a very drunk Charlie Sheen was caught chilling at one, and just recently a bride was seen trying to order at the drive-thru in nothing but her wedding dress. Now, a new lawsuit alleges that two locations in New York City have been forcing its employees to give customers fake money as change.
Annette Cirino is filing a class-action lawsuit in Manhattan federal court on behalf of her 17-year-old daughter, alleging the teen reported the allegations to cops after being “manipulated” into distributing funny money while working behind the counter at both restaurants.
“The girl has been quite distraught since this happened,” said the family’s lawyer, Richard Garbarini, adding the suit will demand at least $5 million in real money damages.
To pull off the scheme, both locations scrapped a longtime “no large bills” policy and accepted $50 and $100 bills from customers, so cashiers could distribute the phony $20 bills, the suit says.
Cirino, of Manhattan, claims her daughter was falsely told by bosses that she had accidentally accepted two fake $20 bills from customers — and was ordered to pay it back “out of pocket” or give the bogus cash to unsuspecting customers as change.
Cirino’s daughter, identified only as “J.A”, finally reached out to the police after secretly recording an intimidating meeting she had with her supervisors.
After two weeks of passing off additional fake bills at management’s request, the teen refused to further participate in the alleged fraud, the suit says.
She was subsequently called into an Aug. 7 meeting, where she was surrounded by four bullying supervisors who claimed undercover detectives from the NYPD were there to arrest her.
But her bosses weren’t aware that she was secretly taping the meeting and had already recorded a conversation in which she was ordered to distribute fake bills.
“Fearing for her freedom and safety,” she walked straight to a police station afterward, armed with the audiotapes and a fake bill she kept as evidence, the suit says.