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Florida restaurant fined $314K+ for stealing tips, wages

The U.S. Department of Labor reported Friday that the Vietnamese chain Pho 79 “illegally diverted” federal overtime pay and tips for 65 employees.

DAVIE, Fla. — Federal officials say a Florida restaurant chain with six locations has been fined more than $314,500 for taking employee tips and wages.

The U.S. Department of Labor reported Friday that the Vietnamese chain Pho 79 “illegally diverted” federal overtime pay and tips for 65 employees. The South Florida SunSentinel reports that, on average, the fine would come out to about $4,800 per employee.

The Labor Department found that Pho 79 had a number of violations, including forcing some employees to work virtually unlimited hours, taking all tips from workers and did not keep a record of employee hours worked.

Pho 79 employees contacted Friday did not comment on the violations. A Labor Department spokesman said the restaurant agreed to comply with the applicable laws in the future.

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