The manager of bb.q Chicken on Harvard Avenue, whose father founded the global bb.q chain in South Korea, is suing the Korean Broadcasting System, a reporter and a producer over a story last fall that alleged the manager is living high on the hog with money siphoned by the father from corporate accounts.
In his suits, filed this week in US District Court, Hyewoong Yoon charges the story, which he alleged was based mainly on information from a disgraced former employee who actually was fired for siphoning money from the company, has personally cost him $39 million in lost revenue by ruffling the feathers of would-be diners who decided to eat somewhere else. He based this amount on a decline in chain revenue after the story aired and what he said was his 63% ownership of the chain.
Yoon is also seeking $445,000 in damages under the Massachusetts wiretapping law because, he says, the reporter recorded and then broadcast a phone call with him without his consent, as required by the law.
The broadcast (in Korean), which featured electronically disguised voices, blurred faces and scenes of Faneuil Hall, Harvard and a sign on I-84 reading "BOSTON," aired Nov. 15, 2018. In it, the reporter says she spent several hours sitting in the bb.q restaurant on Harvard Avenue hoping to catch Yoon to ask him about the allegations and status of his visa, only he never showed, so she finally retreated to her car, parked on Harvard Avenue across from the restaurant and called him - reaching him in Watertown.