The former operators of two Brisbane DA Burger outlets will face the Fair Work Ombudsman in court for allegedly underpaying 16 workers.

The outlets in West End and New Farm in Brisbane were audited in December 2021 as part of surprise inspections that were carried out in key food precincts in the city.

Barbkey We Pty Ltd, which previously operated the two Da Burger outlets, was issued with a compliance notice in April 2022 after inspectors formed the belief 16 food and beverage and kitchen attendants had been underpaid.

The company and its sole director Joseph Gerard Barbagallo will now address the matter in court after it was alleged the Barbkey We Pty Ltd failed to comply with a compliance notice, which required the company to back-pay the workers’ outstanding entitlements.

The Fair Work Ombudsman also alleges Barbagallo was involved in the contravention.

Barbkey We Pty Ltd could be penalised up to $33,300, with Barbagallo facing a fine of up to $6,660.

The Ombudsman is seeking an order from the court for the company to comply with the notice as well as rectify all underpayments in full plus superannuation and interest.

“Where employers do not comply, we are prepared to take appropriate legal action to ensure employees receive their lawful entitlements,” says Fair Work Ombudsman Sandra Parker.

“A court can order a business to pay penalties on top of having to back-pay workers.”