A new report alleges an Atlanta water department employee demanded bribes from one of the city’s most famous businesses, Manuel’s Tavern.
The inspector didn’t ask for money, but according to a law department investigation, the woman expected to eat for free all of the time.
The document says Cynthia Burch demanded free food in order to make sure the tavern maintained clean marks with regulators.
Brian Maloof offered Burch an initial complimentary meal as she checked equipment used to separate out grease in the kitchen, but that turned into constant requests for meals at no charge.
According to investigators, Burch would often bring steaks and pork chops for restaurant cooks to prepare for her dinner. She would also bring Martina Miller, another water employee, to eat.
Burch both implied and stated directly that she caused problems for restaurants that did not comply with her demands, according to the law department probe.
Burch initially denied accepting the meals, but when she was told investigators had evidence she changed her story. Burch has been fired from her position.
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