ReBar Owner Banned for Life From Restaurant Industry for Ruining Weddings

By Janet Upadhye on July 3, 2014 6:57am 

 The state's Attorney General’s office has banned Jason Stevens from being involved in the restaurant business in New York state.
The state's Attorney General’s office has banned Jason Stevens from being involved in the restaurant business in New York state.
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DNAinfo.com/Janet Upadhye

DUMBO — Former reBar owner Jason Stevens has been banned for life from the restaurant business in New York state and is on the hook for $1.1 million in restitution for bilking dozens of couples who booked his venue for their weddings, according to an order by the Attorney General’s office.

The order signed by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Loren Baily-Schiffman on June 26 mandates that Stevens pay back all couples whose weddings were in the lurch when he abruptly shuttered his popular events venue in May and failed to return their hefty deposits.

According to the order, Stevens will be forced to pay $1.1 million in restitution to 73 couples who were identified at the time of the order.

Another 20 have been identified since, bringing the total to just over $1.2 million, a source said.

In full, he owes $1.8 million to approximately 150 couples, sources said.

Stevens, who faces 3 1/3 to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to grand larceny and criminal tax fraud for stealing more than $1 million in sales tax, will be on the hook for that money even after his prison term.

A source said Stevens does not have the cash to pay back the couples who screamed at him outside Brooklyn Criminal Court in May.

Former reBar employee Tyler Lindsay, who is owed $3,400 in lost wages, thinks the order falls short of justice for all of the staff, vendors and couples who lost money when they got involved with Stevens.

"He shouldn't be allowed to do any kind of business," he said. "It shouldn't just be limited to restaurants."

Stevens' lawyer, Allan Bahn, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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