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Family of accused attempted murderer to try to keep his North End restaurant open by transferring ownership to his brothers

William Ferullo

Ferullo, Mendoza family attorney, asks for some time.

To nobody's great surprise, Patrick Mendoza did not appear at a Boston Licensing Board hearing today on his fitness to own and run a liquor-serving license at Monica's Trattoria on Prince Street now that he's been charged with trying to murder somebody on Hanover Street.

Wililam Ferullo, who has served as the family's licensing attorney for some 20 years, told the board in a hearing via Zoom that Mendoza's wife, Elisa, and his two brothers, Jorge and Francis, are looking to have the restaurant signed over to the brothers, both of whom are also in the North End restaurant business.

He said they are hoping to keep the restaurant remain open, as it has been for the past eight days, by making a six-year employee the new manager of record. Boston restaurants are required to have a "manager of record" answerable to the board, and that's a role that Patrick Mendoza is no longer filling - one of the requirements being to appear at licensing hearings.

Board members, however, said they are unsure how the transfer can happen without the signature of Patrick Mendoza, who is the restaurant's sole owner. Ferullo said that's why it will likely take him and the family until next week to figure that out and seek a formal transfer of ownership from the board.

The hearing began with Ferullo waiving what is the customary reading of police reports that led to the hearing. The police reports in this case cover not only Mendoza's alleged attempt to gun down a long-time acquaintance outside Modern Pastry but events on June 22 and June 29 as well. Court records show he was scheduled for trial in Suffolk Superior Court on a robbery charge in August.

"Is Mr. Mendoza here today?" board Chairwoman Kathleen Joyce asked.

"He is not," Ferullo said, adding, however, that Eliza Mendoza was sitting behind him in his office.

Ferullo pleaded with the board for time to file paperwork to transfer ownership, saying that since the failed shooting, Mendoza's brothers and wife have been pitching in to keep Monica's Trattoria open and its 15 fulltime and 10 parttime workers employed - and income coming in for Eliza Mendoza and the couple's four children.

Ferullo said that in the past, the board has granted permission to restaurants to keep operating even if their designated managers were suddenly unavailable. "People are taking vacations, people get sick, people become incapacitated," he said.

Joyce, however, said this is a completely different case.

"This is really unprecedented," Joyce said. Unlike with the examples Ferullo cited, in this case, "when called upon, the manager of record is unavailable for a week, he's evading the law and he's accused of some serious crimes."

Innocent, etc.

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Comments

It's the employees who are the ones who know how to run that place. It can only survive with them. You gotta meet these young men and women on the height of lunch crowds.

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I'm sure you're right and I hate for the employees to be collateral damage, but in no way should the licensing board allow the liquor license transfer. The owner allegedly tried to murder someone and is on the run.

I'm not saying close the restaurant, but permanently strip the liquor license and make it BYOB, with the caveat that his ownership interests are immediately removed. Otherwise demand the restaurant close until he's found....and still strip the liquor license.

He's a fugitive wanted on attempted murder. Full stop.

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I'd be real interested to know employees' experiences working for Mendoza and the general labor environment in his establishments, timeliness of pay, safety, etc... I have a hunch there may be some stories there.

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...and how willing will any of those employees be to speak to any labor rights violations given their employer's current track record?

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https://northend.page/sites/default/files/2023-07/complaint.pdf

Pat seems like a choir boy compared to his brother.

P. Mendoza also subjects women to sexual harassment, but with less frequency than his brother. However, he has an apathetic attitude about F. Mendoza subjecting the female employees to sexual harassment. P. Mendoza seems more focused on making sure the restaurant is profitable, whereas Frank seems more focused on getting drunk and getttin laid.

P. Mendoza is not innocent either. Not only does he fail to protect the young women from his brother, but he gets very "handsy" when he goes behind the bar.

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What I take from that is that they both drink their own profits while bartending at the restaurant...which probably also goes to "character" of the license holder. Drinking while bartending is probably the fastest way to screwup on the job and pickup a license violation.

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Just a coincidence that he was on the list Mayor Wu gave to the police

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Does Trump’s Fifth Avenue Fantasy now extend to anyone who even aspires to Trump-level assholery?

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I dislike not supporting a place I would otherwise patronize but for a toxic owner. Hopeful that the likely hundred-plus employees of this group can continue to earn their livelihood. A lot of the North End leaves me cold, but Vinoteca especially was a place I liked.

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Isn't he one of the restaurant owners who recently sued the mayor for discriminating against white men who wanted tables on the sidewalk?

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He and his brother Jorge made up half the plaintiffs in the lawsuit over whether the mayor hated white Italian men so much she went after white Italian men who own North End restaurants (and never mind that the Mendozas are of Argentinian descent and one of the other plaintiffs was a woman). They quietly folded and dropped the suit last month.

Brother Jorge was also a plaintiff in a separate suit against the city over its three-month-long requirement to show proof of vaccination to enter most public indoor spaces. A judge threw that case out in January.

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I know it's fun to dunk on these two clowns, but their mother immigrated to Argentina from Italy (something that was popular about the same time immigrating from Germany to Brazil was popular), which makes them half-Italian...which is probably more than most of the North End residents.

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The answer to that question should be part of any deal to maintain ownership. Let's hope this doesn't turn into a real-life "Sopranos" mini-series.

I'm not worried about the employees because so many restaurants are short-staffed. I'm worried about getting shot while lining up for a bakery treat.

Holy Canoli!

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Something tells me Boston Zagat won’t be reviewing him as “Jorge Mendoza, warm and convivial host."

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Never rat on your friends and always keep your mouth shut

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Cops know that almost everyone will give up their friends if the alternative is them taking the fall. I believe that aiding a fugitive is a felony. IDK if aiding this guy would make them accessories, but that would be serious stuff.

If your 'friends' are organized crime, then yeah, it may be wiser to take the fall, but I haven't seen anyone saying that that's the case here.

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Hoffa?

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As perturbed as I am by the thought of allowing this nutcase to run amok (after all, it’s been a long time since the Patriarcas ran the North End), it’s not fair to deny his hardworking, uninvolved staff the chance to keep making a living in high season.

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Can you weigh their employment against public safety? Have you seen the video of the perpetrator shooting in the middle of Hanover Street? It looked like a movie.

In this current market, restaurants are cutting their business hours due to staff shortages. Another idea would be for the DA's office could use their budget to compensate employees, rather than enable a thug (and his "lawyers") to control the streets of the city. He's a fugitive from justice.

The benefit of a few sacrificed for the good of the many.

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The Commonwealth provides unemployment compensation, if that were to happen/become necessary.

I can't quite imagine the DA's office having resources to fund unemployment for employees of company where the principal is alleged to have engaged in criminal behavior.

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Funded by recovered ill-gotten gains. It seems everyone here agrees that the employees would be victims if the business closed while the owner, armed and dangerous, is still a fugitive.

Stop the flow of money to him, and protect the public.

Bada Bing, Bada Boom!

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is standard journalistic practice.

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So many of Boston's restaurants run on the labor of undocumented workers. And you can bet if someone has no problem with allegedly attempting murder in the streets, they probably aren't too concerned about making sure their payroll taxes are all up to snuff. Or that overtime is paid. Or that people get paid at all because "you ain't got fuckin papers and I'll get your ass deported if you say something."

Not saying that this particular guy is doing this, but quoting from other cases that I'm aware of that have run the gamut from small family-run businesses (like this one) to well known chains like Legal Sea Food and Cheesecake Factory (who are usually hiring subcontractors to do their labor rights violations for them). As much as our farming industry is dependent on undocumented workers, the restaurants that serve up that food is largely in the same boat. Although the way this country is going, we're just starting to treat passport-carrying US citizens about the same as the folks with no papers in certain strata of our workforce.

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It's not fair. He should come forward and turn over management of the business to someone who isn't facing felony charges to right this wrong.

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...someone who isn't going to funnel the proceeds to him.

You can safely bet the cops are aware of THAT possibility.

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Other restaurant owners have gone to jail without losing the restaurant. But there is no reason to allow a transfer while he is a fugitive. They can suspend the liquor license without closing anything, and they can wait for dumb dumb to transfer the license when he decides to face the music. It will motivate him to come back.

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Using the liquor license is a great squeeze tactic! They would hate to lose that! Amd as of 11am ET today, he is in police custody!

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BPD announced 9 minutes ago that Mendoza was caught by the fugitive unit.

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If he is convicted he should forfeit the restaurant and liquor license. Transferring ownership should be prohibited as a part of his punishment for attempted murder.

But closing the restaurant makes the staff victims. How to stop the victimization of staff? Create a trust via legislative action that is controlled by the current staff and continues into the future to be controlled by staff who are vested after a given period of time.

Require Mendoza to sell the restaurant and liquor license to the trust. Allow him to sell it for enough to give him money to live on after he serves however many years he lives in prison. Or require that what money he is paid in the sale be invested, managed by the state with the investment gains used to pay for the cost of his time out in state prison. When he finishes his sentence return to him what he was paid, plus an adjustment for inflation, so that he manages to have something to live on for whatever remains of his life.

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Are you creating a union?

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