The US Supreme Court refused Monday to consider the case of a Muslim immigrant from Afghanistan found by a jury to have suffered workplace harassment.
Abdul Azimi asked the justices to take his case after a federal jury declined to award compensation despite concluding that he was subjected to an oppressive and hostile work environment at Jordan's Meats Inc. in the state of Maine. Azimi said the harassment got worse after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Azimi, who was fired by the company, asked the justices to consider whether the US District judge in the case was mistaken in dismissing his claim that his discharge was discriminatory. Azimi's lawyers also had asked the justices to consider whether the judge erred by refusing to allow jury instructions on consideration of punitive damages where the jury returned no compensatory damages.
On the lack of compensation, the 1st US Circuit Court of Appeals said Azimi put no evidence in the record of any out-of-pocket costs for medical treatment or psychological counseling or of any wages lost from the abuse he suffered. The jury "reasonably rejected" the testimony from Azimi, his wife and a friend about his emotional distress, the appeals court said.