The founder of Papa John's pizza is suing for access to the company's books and records after he resigned this month amid reports he used a racial slur during a media training session.
In a complaint filed Thursday, John Schnatter says he wants access to the documents because of the "unexplained and heavy-handed way" that Papa John's International Inc. has treated him.
The court filing comes as the company tries to distance itself from Schnatter, who resigned as chairman after Forbes published a July 11 article about the alleged slur.
Schnatter says he has been falsely accused, and calls his resignation a mistake.
The company has adopted a "poison-pill" plan to try to prevent Schnatter from amassing a controlling stake.
The company is based in Kentucky but incorporated in Delaware.