Saudi diplomat sues Houston hospital for $5M in libel case

Melody Dareing Apr. 7, 2014, 12:51pm

A diplomat is suing a hospital after an employee allegedly leaked his health information and an alleged hospital debt to the consulate.

Hozam Alajmi filed a lawsuit March 24 in the United States Court for the Southern District of Texas Houston Division against Methodist Hospital. The suit presents allegations of libel, violation of Texas Health and Safety Code, negligence, invasion of privacy, intentional infliction of emotional distress, civil conspiracy and vicarious liability.

The lawsuit states that Alajmi has used the hospital since 1996 for his medical care. According to the complaint, payments were always made either by medical insurance furnished by the Saudi government or a financial guarantee from the Armed Forces Office of the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, D.C. There has never been any unpaid bills, Alajmi claims. 


The suit says Alajmi went to Methodist Hospital on Oct. 24, 2011, seeking new treatment. When providing a new financial guarantee, and the Armed Forces office was billed, the complaint said. Alajmi also instructed the hospital not to contact anyone regarding his treatment or billing other than the party named in the financial guaranty.

The complaint states a hospital employee, Summer Dajani, sent a letter to the Sultan A. Al Angari, the Consul General of Saudi Arabia in Houston disclosing Alajmi’s and his two sons medical information and stating that they owed the hospital $31,112.87.

"The Consul General of Saudi Arabia in Houston is not mentioned anywhere in the
Guarantee as a responsible payor, nor is the Consul General of Saudi Arabia mentioned as Mr. Alajmi’s employer or legally authorized representative, the suit states.


"Because Mr. Alajmi is a diplomat, The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, is his official employer not the Consulate."


Alajmi claims it is untrue that he owes the hospital $31,112.87 and alleges that Dajani conspired with someone at the consulate in order to intentionally harm Alajmi.

He claims his reputation was tarnished, his duties in the consulate were terminated, his monthly salary suspended for more than 10 months, his employment benefits revoked, and his chances of being promoted to general Consul of Houston seriously compromised.

Alajmi is seeking $5 million in damages.

He is represented by Mehdi Cherkaoui of Cherkaoui & Associates PLLC.

Court Case No. 4:14-CV-00753


This is a report on a civil lawsuit filed at the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas Houston Division. The details in this report come from an original complaint filed by a plaintiff. Please note that a complaint represents an accusation by a private individual, not the government. It is not an indication of guilt, and it represents only one side of the story.

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