A Massachusetts Superior Court judge has ruled that a London-based Caffe Nero chain café cannot be forced to backpay rent for the months during the early days of the pandemic when they were shut down by a state mandate. Judge Kenneth Salinger ruled that the café, which closed permanently in October, was still legally bound for the rest of the rent they owed when they reopened, but not during the state shutdown. Caffe Nero had tried to negotiate for a break in the monthly rent from the landlord, but he would not budge and immediately cited the store as being in default. Ultimately, he sued for $300,000 in back rent which brought the case before Judge Salinger. The Boston location is the only one of Caffe Nero’s 30 U.S. locations that could not ride out the pandemic shutdown and closed permanently.