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$60,000 Plus Back-Pay Awarded to Federal Prison Worker to Settle Discrimination Complaint

Jai Mutreja worked for the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) South Central Regional Office in Dallas as an electrical engineer. Mutreja is of Indian descent and had filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Justice in 1998 alleging he was being discriminated against by his supervisor on the basis of his race. Among other things, Mutreja said that his boss allowed other employees of the office to travel for work assignments, while his requests for travel were usually denied. Mutreja said he was the only Indian who worked at the Dallas BOP offices.

Eighteen months later, Mutreja filed another DOJ complaint, saying he was unlawfully terminated from his position on trumped up charges, and this was done in retaliation for his filing the first complaint. Mutreja was fired when he was accused of threatening a co-worker with a firearm. According to Mutreja, the charge was baseless and was made based on his race and "in reprisal of previous complaints against BOP."

Mutreja's second complaint sought $1 million in damages, back pay, resinstatement, and attorney's fees. Six months after the second complaint was filed, Mutreja and the BOP agreed to settle the case as follows:

(1) Mutreja received a lump sum payment of $60,000 inclusive of attorney's fees and costs; (2) Mutreja's termination was suspended and he was reinstated to his position; (3) Mutreja received six month's worth of back pay; (4) All references to his termination and discipline were removed from his personnel files; (5) Mutreja agreed to resign his position; (6) The BOP agreed to give him neutral job references with satisfactory evaluations; and (7) Mutreja agreed never to apply for a job with the BOP again.

See: U.S. Department of Justice, Complaint of Discrimination (Jai Mutreja), Nos. P-99-0054 and P-000142 (settlement signed October 5, 2000).

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U.S. Department of Justice