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JAFREE v. SCOTT

February 20, 1974

SYED J. IQBAL JAFREE, PLAINTIFF,
v.
WILLIAM J. SCOTT, INDIVIDUALLY AND AS ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Bauer, District Judge.

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

This cause comes on the defendants' motion to dismiss the instant complaint pursuant to Rule 12(b)(1) and (6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.

This is an action seeking to redress the alleged deprivation by the defendants of the plaintiff's civil rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution and protected by the Civil Rights Acts of 1870 and 1871, 42 U.S.C. § 1981, 1983, 1985 and 1986. This Court allegedly has jurisdiction over the instant action pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1331(a) and 1343.

The plaintiff, in the complaint, alleges, inter alia, the following facts:

1. The plaintiff, Syed J. Iqbal Jafree is a member of a minority group being brown-skinned Asian American born in Pakistan and a member of the Moslem religion. Plaintiff is a permanent resident of the United States of America and has taken the necessary steps toward becoming a citizen of the United States of America. The plaintiff, since August 1, 1972, has been an employee of the State of Illinois and designated as Assistant Attorney General of the State of Illinois. He was appointed by defendant William J. Scott as per a letter dated June 22, 1972.

2. The defendant William J. Scott is the duly elected Attorney General of the State of Illinois. Defendants Robert J. O'Rourke, J. Calvin Bostian and Charles Evans are duly appointed and performing the duties of Assistants Attorney General of the State of Illinois. Defendant William J. Nettles is duly appointed as a member of the staff of the Attorney General of the State of Illinois performing clerical functions.

3. Since August 1, 1972 and thereafter, plaintiff has completely and faithfully performed his duties as an Assistant Attorney General. The excellence of plaintiff's performance as a lawyer, as an Assistant Attorney General and as chief of the Opinion Division of the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Illinois was expressed by defendant Attorney General Scott and defendant Bostian.

4. Prior to and including May 1, 1973 the plaintiff, while an Assistant Attorney General, exercised his rights of free speech and comment to openly express his opinion that the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Illinois suffers from racial discrimination in the staffing of personnel. More specifically, prior to and up to and including May 1, 1973 the plaintiff openly complained that his annual salary of $14,000 a year was less than that received by "white" attorneys of lesser or equal qualifications to the plaintiff in the Office of the Attorney General. Plaintiff also openly criticized the failure of the office of the Attorney General to hire only one black clerk, one black secretary and one black janitor. Furthermore, during the same period of time plaintiff openly criticized the office of the Attorney General for having only one non-white attorney, one Jew and only one registered Democrat as an attorney. Each and all of the defendants were fully aware of the plaintiff's criticism and view of the racial, religious and political discrimination existing in the staffing of the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Illinois.

5. In June of 1973 the plaintiff was assigned the responsibility for objectively researching and considering whether the former Governor of the State of Illinois, Otto Kerner, was entitled to his state pension or whether his pension was to be forfeited because of a conviction under federal law in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. As the result of plaintiff's impartial research, study and consideration, the plaintiff prepared an opinion and supportive memorandum for consideration by defendant Scott as Attorney General of the State of Illinois, that former Governor Kerner's pension could not legally be forfeited by the State of Illinois. On information and belief, plaintiff alleges that defendant Scott, upon receipt of plaintiff's opinion and supportive memorandum concerning former Governor Kerner's state pension rights, developed a personal animosity toward the plaintiff unrelated to his professional performance. Without conference or consideration of the plaintiff's view, on July 16, 1973, defendant Scott issued a formal opinion as the Attorney General of the State of Illinois that former Governor Kerner's pension be terminated.

6. While the plaintiff was an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Illinois and prior to July 5, 1973, he joined the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO. On Numerous occasions and up to and including July 5, 1973, while plaintiff was an Assistant Attorney General of the State of Illinois, defendants Evans and Nettles, in their positions as agents and officers of the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Illinois, threatened plaintiff with loss of employment for each of the following reasons:

a. his criticism of racial, religious and political discriminatory hiring and personnel practices of the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Illinois; and,

b. his membership in and financial support of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO.

7. Without prior notice or opportunity for hearing, on July 6, 1973, defendants Evans and Nettles entered plaintiff's office in the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Illinois and gave him a copy of a memorandum dated July 6, 1973 signed by defendant Nettles as Administrative Assistant to defendant Scott as Attorney General of the State of Illinois, that as of July 31, 1973 plaintiff was "removed from the payroll" as an Assistant Attorney General of the State of Illinois. Furthermore, on July 6, 1973 defendants Nettles and Evans, while in plaintiff's office and without his consent but in his presence and in spite of the protest of the plaintiff, forcibly examined the personal effects of the plaintiff in his desk, prevented him physically while such acts were in progress from telephoning the police and jointly and severally during the course of this incident threatened him with bodily harm. At the same time defendants Evans and Nettles ordered plaintiff to immediately remove himself from his office and did not allow him the opportunity to remove his personal papers, property, and manuscripts. Following his removal from the office on July 6, 1973, plaintiff advised the local police in Springfield, Illinois of the incident and the actions of defendants Nettles and Evans. On the evening of July 6, 1973 plaintiff sent a special delivery letter to defendant Scott informing him of the series of incidents on that date with defendants Nettles and Evans and asking him to take appropriate action and to reconsider his dismissal as an Assistant Attorney General without a prior hearing and specification of reasons.

8. On or about July 16, 1973 defendant Bostian, in his position as Assistant Attorney General, intimidated and threatened plaintiff. More specifically, defendant Bostian stated that if plaintiff persisted in his attempt to have an investigation by law enforcement agents of the aforesaid actions taken against him by defendants Nettles and Evans on July 6, 1973 and to seek an investigation of racial, religious and political discrimination in the staffing of the Office of the Attorney General, Bostian would see that the plaintiff would be branded as "incompetent and paranoid."

9. Since on or about July 31, 1973 plaintiff has been removed from the employment of the Attorney General of the State of Illinois. As of the date of filing of the instant complaint the plaintiff has been unable to obtain comparable employment or any employment as an attorney. The conduct of the defendants jointly and severally, in removing plaintiff from employment and office as Assistant Attorney General of the State of Illinois for alleged reasons has and will seriously damage plaintiff in his professional standing and prospects for employment and income. The above actions of the defendants have jointly and severally violated the federal constitutional rights of the plaintiff in that:

a. his employment as an Assistant Attorney General of the State of Illinois was terminated without being afforded prior rights of due process;

b. plaintiff was terminated from employment in violation of his constitutionally protected rights as the result of his protected and reasoned expression of opinion and view concerning discriminatory personnel practices in the office of the Attorney General of the State of Illinois;

c. plaintiff was terminated from employment in violation of his constitutionally protected rights for unlawful political considerations by the Attorney General of the State of Illinois;

d. plaintiff was terminated from employment in violation of his constitutionally protected rights for his participation and activity in a voluntary association, namely the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO.

10. Furthermore, the alleged actions of defendants Nettles and Evans on July 6, 1973 violated plaintiff's federally protected civil rights in that the actions of these defendants constituted illegal search and seizure of the plaintiff's property in violation of the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States.

The plaintiff seeks both injunctive relief and actual and punitive damages.

The defendants, in support of their motion to dismiss, contend that this Court lacks jurisdiction ...


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