LOS ANGELES - A Muslim rights group criticized a federal judge on Wednesday, complaining he had compared the civil liberties of Muslim Americans to a "hideous sea monster" while tossing out a lawsuit over the infiltration of California mosques by an FBI informant.
US District Judge Cormac Carney dismissed the lawsuit on Tuesday, which charged that the undercover FBI informant had violated civil liberties of US Muslims by spying on them, ruling that allowing the case to proceed could risk disclosure of government secrets.
In his 36-page order, Carney invoked the fictional Greek hero Odysseus, who was forced to sail his ship between a six-headed sea monster and a dangerous whirlpool during an epic voyage home from the Trojan War.
"Odysseus opted to pass by the monster and risk a few of his individual sailors, rather than hazard the loss of his entire ship to the sucking whirlpool," Carney wrote. "Similarly, the proper application of the state secrets privilege may unfortunately mean the sacrifice of individual liberties for the sake of national security."