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Brown faces lawsuit over unpaid $38K chef’s bill

Brown faces lawsuit over unpaid $38K chef’s bill

6:50 PM ET

  • Jeremy FowlerESPN Staff Writer

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    • ESPN staff writer
    • Previously a college football reporter for CBSSports.com
    • University of Florida graduate

Oakland Raiders wide receiver Antonio Brown is facing a civil lawsuit that alleges that he stiffed a chef’s bill of nearly $40,000 during Pro Bowl festivities in 2018.

Stefano Tedeschi — who goes by the name “The Sports Chef” — filed suit in Osceola (Florida) County on July 30, claiming that Brown’s balance of $38,521.20 remains unpaid.

Brown rented an Orlando-area mansion and hired the chef to prepare food for multiple days, a culinary show and other services for nearly 50 Pro Bowl teammates and many other party guests, Tedeschi told ESPN in an interview Wednesday.

Brown wrongfully terminated the agreement and did not allow Tedeschi to retrieve his equipment and food from the premises, the lawsuit states. A Brown associate told Tedeschi not to make eye contact with Brown on his way out, Tedeschi told ESPN.

Tedeschi added that he never got an official reason for the lack of payment. He paid staff members out of pocket for their work and forwent other work opportunities by committing to Brown.

“I’ve cooked for countless NFL superstars and celebrities,” said Tedeschi, who says he has prepared food for Arizona Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald, New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees and Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston, among others. “Never once have I had one problem [until this]. My food is so good, and my mannerisms in someone’s home is second to none.”

Brown’s attorney, Darren Heitner, responded to the lawsuit, saying only, “We expect to be filing a motion to dismiss the complaint and will let the filing speak for itself.”

Tedeschi claimed that Brown later offered to pay Tedeschi in social media advertising, which Tedeschi said he didn’t accept.

This is the latest legal incident for Brown in Florida. The All-Pro faced two lawsuits from an April 2018 incident in which Brown allegedly yelled at security and threw items from inside an apartment off a balcony, according to documents obtained by ESPN. Both lawsuits were for “damages in excess of $15,000, exclusive of” attorney fees and interest.

In April, Brown settled the lawsuit brought by the guardian of a 2-year-old boy alleging “intentional infliction of emotional distress and assault” after items flung from the 14th floor of The Mansions at Acqualina nearly hit the child.

In January, Brown was involved in a domestic dispute during which he allegedly pushed the mother of his daughter to the ground in Hollywood, Florida. No arrests were made and no charges filed. Heitner called the allegations “baseless and false,” and Brown later filed for majority custody of his daughter.

Traded from the Pittsburgh Steelers to the Raiders in March, Brown recently filed a grievance with the NFLPA over the expiration of his Schutt AiR Advantage helmet. Brown lost the grievance on Monday and reported to the Raiders on Tuesday. He is also dealing with a foot injury that’s keeping him off the practice field.

The Undefeated’s Jesse Washington contributed to this report.

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