FACT CHECK: Bernie Moreno Destroyed Evidence He Had “Obligation” To Keep To Get Out Of Paying Employees
January 26, 2024
WCMH: “The court record did affirm [the] claim that Moreno got rid of evidence.”
Columbus, OH – After Bernie Moreno faced attacks on the debate stage for shredding evidence he was legally required to keep while being sued by his employees for wage theft, a new WCMH fact check today further details Moreno’s efforts to avoid paying his employees the overtime they’d earned and “affirm[s] [the] claim that Moreno got rid of evidence” he had an “obligation” to keep.
“Bernie Moreno doesn’t think he has to follow the rules or answer for his decision to shred evidence, just like he didn’t think he had to keep key records despite being legally required to do so,” said ODP Spokesperson Katie Smith. “As the reports and fact checks pile on, the list of questions Moreno must answer about destroying evidence only gets longer.”
Read more from WCMH below:
WCMH: Fact check: Did Senate candidate Bernie Moreno shred documents accusing him of wage theft?
January 26, 2024
- During a debate between Republican candidates in Ohio’s U.S. Senate race, state Sen. Matt Dolan accused businessman Bernie Moreno of shredding evidence against him in a court case.
- “Bernie, we learned this week that we don’t know if we can trust you,” Dolan said. “Your employees trusted you to follow a court order and to not destroy documents that helped their case against you. What did you do? You shredded those documents because it helped Bernie Moreno, not the employees. This is a matter of trust.”
- Dolan’s claims allude to a lawsuit filed against Moreno in 2017 by former employee Omar Adem, who worked for him at a Mercedez-Benz dealership in Burlington, Massachusetts. The lawsuit alleged that Moreno had failed to pay Adem for overtime hours as far back as 2015.
- Court records from August 2022 show that Moreno said in a deposition that he received monthly reports telling him if anyone worked overtime in the dealership. However, Moreno testified that he did not retain documents from the dealership […] Moreno added that he shredded documents sometime in late 2020.
- The court record did affirm Dolan’s claim that Moreno got rid of evidence.
- “The inference is clear: Defendants either did not retain or shredded at least these monthly reports,” a judge wrote in the documents.
- “Plaintiffs should not be forced to take Moreno’s word about the substance of these reports,” the records read and further said that Moreno had an obligation to keep such reports.
- The presiding judge wrote that […] Moreno either lost or destroyed documents — which were relevant to the case and he was required to preserve — the court records said. The record also stated that Moreno knew or should have known that he was needed to keep the documents.
- “The monthly reports reflecting overtime were relevant to this case, whether or not salespeople were listed in them,” the court documents read. “Thus, whether negligently or intentionally, the Defendants lost or destroyed evidence that they were required to preserve and which they knew or should have known was relevant.”