Bun B’s Trill Burgers has been wrapped in a legal feud.

In 2021, Bun B, also known as Bernard Freeman, unveiled the concept of Trill Burgers restaurant, as previously shared by AFROTECH™. Later in June 2023, the rap legend and businessman opened his first brick-and-mortar location in Houston, TX, his hometown. The success kicked into high gear as the restaurant reportedly sold more than 53,000 smash burgers within 30 days of its opening.

Now, the Houston Chronicle reports that Bun B is suing former employees Patsy and Benson Vivares for fraud. The lawsuit, filed in August 2023, claims that the Vivares siblings used $45,000 in earnings from the 2022 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo to support their own restaurant, Sticky’s Chicken, which is no longer in operation.

The outlet details that Patsy and Benson were fired in July 2022 following the alleged misconduct as well as further misuse of Trill Burgers’ funds. The two reportedly have yet to give back the money.

While Trill Burgers is seeking a return of the funds in the lawsuit, Patsy and Benson have denied the allegations. The two also filed a petition against Bun B and Trill Burgers’ part-owners Nicholas Scurfield and Andy Nguyen. The Vivares claim that Bun B himself attempted to defraud Trill Burgers and that the sibling duo was behind the burger restaurant’s inception. Per the outlet, Bun B’s lawyer, Charles Adams, denied the fraud allegations against his client.

Walter Beard, one of the Vivares’ lawyers, wrote in the siblings’ January petition to the Houston Chronicle, “Let it be known: Trill Burgers was not Bun B’s idea, nor was it the result of his sweat, equity, or ingenuity. Patsy and BJ are the true heroes.”

The Vivares’ lawyers also claim that the brother and sister remain part-owners of Trill Burgers. The outlet discloses that an additional hearing regarding their countersuit should occur in April 2024. Prior to the hearing, the siblings’ motion to limit Trill Burgers’ operation was denied.

Before the ongoing lawsuit, Bun B had been outspoken about his vision for Trill Burgers’ future. In a previous interview with AFROTECH™, he shared his hopes for the restaurant to not only build generational wealth but also solidify his legacy in the hospitality industry.

“It’s amazing to have this one brick-and-mortar location, and if we never got any brick, I’d be extremely proud of what we achieved,” Bun B told AFROTECH™ at the time. 

He added, “But with that being said, I would love to have this burger presented to all people in all places and build this company in a way that companies should be built, with the thought of creating generational wealth and starting something that finishes long after you’re gone. I’m 50 years old. If I lived to be 100, I would hope that I wouldn’t live to see the height of this company.”