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Sterling v. Tenet

416 F.3d 338 (2005)

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Sterling v. Tenet

United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

416 F.3d 338 (2005)

Facts

Jeffrey Sterling (plaintiff) was a covert agent for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) (defendant). Sterling was African American and sued the CIA for discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The nature and location of Sterling’s employment and that of his colleagues was classified information. CIA Director George Tenet (defendant) filed a declaration with the district court claiming that discussion of the facts in this case would compromise CIA missions and sources and would harm foreign relations. The district court held that the state-secrets doctrine prohibited the introduction of the evidence that Sterling would need to make a prima facie claim of discrimination. Accordingly, the district court dismissed the complaint. Sterling appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Wilkinson, J.)

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