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Chipotle Says It Fired 450 Workers in Minnesota Who Couldn't Prove They Were in the U.S. Legally

A Chipotle Mexican Grill employee cleans the windows at the restaurant in Mountain View, Calif., Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2007. The spinoff of a burrito chain coupled with record-setting overseas sales helped McDonald's Corp. more than double its fourth-quarter profit, executives said Tuesday. Even without the gain from the spinoff of its Chipotle chain, McDonald's said income from continuing operations climbed to $761.2 million, or 61 cents a share, a 26 percent increase from $604.8 million last year. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)

A Chipotle Mexican Grill employee cleans the windows at the restaurant in Mountain View, Calif., Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2007. The spinoff of a burrito chain coupled with record-setting overseas sales helped McDonald's Corp. more than double its fourth-quarter profit, executives said Tuesday. Even without the gain from the spinoff of its Chipotle chain, McDonald's said income from continuing operations climbed to $761.2 million, or 61 cents a share, a 26 percent increase from $604.8 million last year. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)


After months of rumors that Chipotle Mexican Grill, which has been hit by immigration audits, fired hundreds of apparently undocumented workers from its Minnesota restaurants, the chain has announced it let go of 450 people.

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. says it fired the employees last year after they failed to prove they were eligible to work in the U.S.

The Denver-based restaurant chain previously hadn't disclosed how many workers were dismissed after a Department of Homeland Security audit of employees' work documents, saying only that it was in the hundreds.

Chipotle disclosed the number in a filing last week with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Chipotle says it requires all employees to have documents proving they are eligible to work in the U.S. but some workers may still be unauthorized.

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A federal audit of workers' documents also is under way at Chipotle restaurants in Virginia and Washington, D.C., to see if their documents are authentic or contain false information.

This is based on a story by The Associated Press.

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