OWNER’S GROPE WILL COST HIM
Must Pay Fine, Back Wages In J.H. Harassment Case
A Jackson Heights restaurant owner was ordered by the New York State Division of Human Rights to pay over $172,000 for sexually harassing a waitress, it was announced.
David Orduna, the owner of Team Taco Mexico at 88-10 Roosevelt Ave., must pay a total of $50,000 in compensatory damages and $47,368.74 in back wages to the waitress along with a $75,000 civil fine.
According to the state agency, Or- duna began a pattern of sexual harassment that included touching his employee inappropriately, appearing at her home uninvited and offering to pay her rent in exchange for a sexual relationship.
When the waitress repeatedly refused Orduna’s advances, the abuse turned to insults in the presence of other customers and a weekly salary that was $250 less than other waitresses.
As a result of the abuse the victim was forced to resign from her position and suffered depression and anxiety.
In a second case, a woman employed at K & K Management Services, a cleaning and contracting company in Flushing, received $75,000 in compensatory damages and $27,500 in back wages after the Division found that she was harassed by the company’s owner, Kwang Wun Kim. According to the agency, the victim was inappropriately fondled, and Kim attempted to persuade her to sleep with potential clients to increase business. The harassment continued even after the woman resigned from the company.
Kim was also been ordered to pay $25,000 in civil fines and penalties.
Sexual harassment is prohibited as a form of sex discrimination under the New York State Human Rights Law. Last year the Division received 517 sexual harassment complaints.
“Every person is legally entitled to a work environment free of harassment and discrimination,” said New York State Deputy Secretary for Civil Rights Alphonso David. “Sexual harassment will not be tolerated in our state and the Administration will use its powers to prosecute those who violate the law.”
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