Alarming Labor Complaint in Brooklyn
BROOKLYN (CN) - After recruiting young black men just out of prison, a concrete company, or one of its workers, demands a $150 weekly kickback for them to keep their jobs as part of an alleged "Black Coalition," a man claims in Federal Court.
Frank Littlejohn sued Palatial Concrete and its CEO Vincent Loscalzo.
He also sued a man he knows only as "Big Carl," who allegedly demanded the bribes.
Littlejohn claims in the lawsuit that he began working with "Big Carl" at Palatial Concrete as a laborer in July 2012. Only later, he claims, was he informed that he had to pay Big Carl the weekly kickback to be part of the "Black Coalition" - or lose his job.
Littlejohn says he was offered $14 to mix and shovel concrete, and that Big Carl told him he had to pay the "fee" for his membership in the "Black Coalition," and that if he wanted to continue working he had to "play ball."
Fearful, Littlejohn said he paid the kickback of $150, but noticed that Big Carl approached only black workers for kickbacks.
The next week, Littlejohn says, he refused to pay Big Carl the kickback and complained to the head foreman.
Littlejohn says he was fired, and when he filed a complaint of discrimination, Big Carl called him and told him to "leave it alone."
Littlejohn seeks damages for racial discrimination and retaliation.
He is represented by Craig Hanlon.