Robbie Hargett Nov. 3, 2015, 1:16pm


A Texas resident is suing Raytheon, his former employer, alleging discrimination.

Ammar Al-habash filed a lawsuit July 2 in the Sherman Division of the Eastern District of Texas against Raytheon Company, alleging religious discrimination, race discrimination, national origin discrimination and retaliation.

According to the complaint, on June 30, 2009, Al-habash, a Muslim U.S. citizen born in Syria, was hired by Raytheon, a major defense contractor. He had two master's degrees, a Ph.D. in mathematics and top security clearance from the U.S. government, the suit says.

Despite his extensive experience and expertise, the suit states, Al-habash was assigned tasks outside his competency level and, shortly after beginning employment, he was on several occasions prevented from completing applications for project clearance because some of his relatives still lived in the Middle East. Al-habash was passed over for promotions as a result, the suit says.

The lawsuit says Al-habash noticed a pattern of racist and prejudiced comments from Raytheon employees regarding Muslims and Arabs, usually associated with news stories playing on company cafeteria televisions. The suit alleges Al-habash heard Raytheon employees say Muslims and Arabs were "all savages" and "monsters," and that "we should bomb the hell out of all of them."

Al-habash was later denied credit on a project on which he served as a consultant, the suit says. He filed a charge of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in December 2013, and, less than two months later, he received his first negative annual performance review and was informed he would be subject to a performance improvement plan.

The plaintiff alleges the plan was structured to prevent him from succeeding, and he filed a second charge of discrimination Feb. 24, 2014, alleging retaliation.

Raytheon terminated Al-habash's employment March 13, 2014.

Al-habash seeks actual, compensatory and exemplary damages, plus attorney fees and costs. He is represented by attorneys Paul W. Simon and Dustin A. Paschal of Simon Paschal in Dallas.

Sherman Division of the Eastern District of Texas case number 4:15-cv-00450.

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