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Last updateWed, 16 Oct 2019 12am







    Monday, October 14, 2019-7:32:40A.M.






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9th circuit says appeal of plaintiff in discrimination lawsuit can proceed

THE U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has granted the request of Garabed O. Mirzoian to proceed with his appeal without paying filing fees.

But Mirzoian will continue to represent himself after Ninth Circuit Judges Kim Mclane Wardlaw and Andrew D. Hurwitz denied his motion for appointment of counsel.

The judges also waived the excerpts of record requirement because the appellant is proceeding without counsel.

Mirzoian is appealing the decision of District Court for the NMI Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona to dismiss with prejudice his discrimination lawsuit against Telesource CNMI Inc. for failing to pursue administrative remedies with labor authorities in a timely manner.

Mirzoian wants the Ninth Circuit to reverse the judgment rendered by the district court, saying that he believed the decision or order was biased.

In July of 2019, Judge Manglona dismissed Mirzoian’s second amended complaint, stating that he had failed to state a claim on which relief could be granted.

He also “failed to timely pursue administrative remedies with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or any agency that held itself out as having authority to investigate his charge of discrimination,” the judge added.

Last year, the Ninth Circuit vacated Judge Manglona’s ruling that dismissed Mirzoian’s $2 million lawsuit against his former employer.

The Ninth Circuit said it was not clear from Judge Manglona’s order whether the district court considered the effect of Mirzoian’s filing of complaint with the CNMI Department of Labor on the issue of exhaustion of administrative orders.

The Ninth Circuit directed the district court to consider whether the plaintiff could be deemed to have constructively filed his claims with the EEOC on the day he filed his charge with CNMI Labor, and therefore exhausted his administrative remedies at that time.

The district court then ordered Mirzoian to file a second amended complaint.

In his second amended complaint, Mirzoian stated that 18 days after he was terminated, he sought help from CNMI Labor on May 9, 2006.

He also stated that he attempted to get a Saipan lawyer to take his case but to no avail.

Mirzoain said he was advised by an in-law in Sept. 2015 to contact the EEOC in Hawaii. He filed the lawsuit after EEOC issued him a right-to-sue letter.

In her order in July 2019, Judge Manglona noted that Mirzoian’s statements “cannot be deemed to have constructively filed a complaint with the EEOC.”

She added, “The second amended complaint gives no indication that DOL and EEOC had a work sharing agreement.”

On Nov. 17, 2015 Mirzoian, representing himself, sued his former employers, Telesource CNMI’s Michel N. El-Rahi and Nidal Z. Zayed, over the plaintiff’s termination in 2006, allegedly due to his disability from a vehicular accident.

Mirzoian sued for wrongful termination, employment discrimination, disability discrimination, for pain and suffering, and emotional distress.

He said Telesource terminated him after finding he was injured as a result of a vehicular accident involving two buses and had suffered injuries during the accident.

According to Mirzoian’s complaint, Telesource changed its name to Pernix Group Inc. and is now based in Fiji and Illinois.