Chipotle Fast Food Chain Faces Federal Probe


After the Denver, Colo., company Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. fired 500 employees more than a year ago, the U.S. government stepped up an investigation into the company's hiring practices.

Now the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is expanding inquiries into the alleged hiring of undocumented workers. The Department of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency is also investigating the allegations after an audit of the fast food chain.

Reuters reports that Chipotle has said it received the subpoena May 17 and intends to cooperate with the SEC's investigation.

Reporter Lisa Baertlein with Reuters wrote:

The popular chain is the highest profile U.S. company to come under the scrutiny of ICE since it shifted enforcement to employers rather than workers in 2009.

Unlike many rivals, Chipotle owns and operates its more than 1,000 U.S. restaurants and is ultimately responsible for hiring.