Islamabad (CNN)An entire crew of workers at a fast food restaurant in Pakistan were allegedly detained on the weekend after refusing police officers' demands for free burgers, according to a statement from the company.
Pakistan police allegedly detain restaurant staff after being refused free burgers
Burger joint Johnny & Jugnu in the eastern city of Lahore said in a statement on Facebook that a group of police officers had visited its store late last week asking for free food, "which has become a common practice for them."
When their request was denied, the statement said: "the police officers threatened our managers and left, only to return the next day to further harass and pressurize our teams on ground with baseless arguments."
On Friday, all 19 staff members and managers at the restaurant were rounded up and held by police for almost seven hours overnight, the statement alleged. Restaurant staff were forced to leave their kitchen and customers unattended, "with our fryers still running," while police claimed they had refused to entertain a "request from a very high profile special guest," said the statement.
A police station house officer has since been arrested and an inquiry is underway, a spokesperson for the city police office of Lahore said Tuesday.
According to the official Twitter account of the provincial Punjab police, the officers involved in the incident have been suspended.
"No one is allowed to take law into his own hands. Injustice will not be tolerated," the tweet said. "All of them will be punished."
The police did not confirm the number of police officers involved in the inquiry, or the details of the incident.
Saman Bashir, head of marketing for Johnny & Jugnu's, said the incident had been very upsetting for the team but praised the quick action taken to suspend those involved.
"We spoke out to the public about what happened, and within two hours maybe we had received a response from authorities," she said. "We're glad that people stood up to support us, that's the silver lining."