United States District Court, District of Columbia
RANDOLPH D. MOSS UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
pro se, Plaintiff Zaid Hassan Abd Al-Latif Masud
Safarini (“Safarini”) filed this suit in March
2017 against various former U.S. and foreign officials, the
Kingdoms of Thailand and Jordan, the Thai National Police,
and Thai Airlines International. He alleges that he was
unlawfully kidnapped in Bangkok, Thailand in 2001 by agents
of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”),
acting with the assistance of the remaining defendants, and
rendered to the United States for trial. Pursuant to the
Prison Litigation Reform Act, 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e)(2)(B)(iii), the Court previously dismissed
Safarini's claims against the Kingdoms of Thailand and
Jordan, the Thai National Police, Dkt. 12, “Thai
Airlines International, ” Ahmed Al-Hajayh, and various
“unknown immigration officials of the Kingdom of
Thailand, Dkt. 14. As a result, the sole remaining defendants
are former Attorney General John Ashcroft, former Director of
the FBI Robert Mueller, and three current or former FBI
agents. Having reviewed the complaint and the relevant law,
the Court now sua sponte dismisses Safarini's
claims against those officials. And, having now addressed all
of Safarini's claims, the Court will dismiss the action.
events giving rise to Plaintiff's claim begin on
September 5, 1986, when Safarini, along with four other armed
men, hijacked a Pan Am flight on the tarmac in Karachi,
Pakistan. See United States' Omnibus Opposition
at 1-2, United States v. Zaid Hassan ABD Al-Latiff Masud
Al Safarini, No. 91-cr-504-03 (D.D.C. Sept. 12, 2017).
Twenty people-including two American citizens-were killed,
and over one hundred people were injured. Id. at 2.
Safarini was tried and convicted in Pakistan in 1987.
Id. After fifteen years in prison in Pakistan,
Safarini was released on September 27, 2001. Id.
alleges in his complaint that, upon his release, a Jordanian
official named Ahmed Al-Hajayh met Safarini and informed him
that Al-Hajayh had made arrangements to transport Safarini
home to Jordan. Dkt. 1 at 4 (Compl. ¶ 15). The arranged
flight included a scheduled stopover in Bangkok, Thailand,
where Safarini says he deplaned to change flights.
Id. While waiting for the next flight that would
take him to Jordan, three FBI special agents, whom Safarini
identifies as “Special Agent Brad, ”
“Special Agent Nada Ali, ” and an “Unknown
Special Agent, ” allegedly handcuffed Safarini and put
him on a flight bound for the United States. Id.
his arrest, Safarini was tried in the United States District
Court for the District of Columbia for multiple crimes,
including murder, attempted murder, attempted air-piracy,
hostage-taking, and conspiracy to commit crimes against the
United States. See United States' Omnibus
Opposition at 2-3, United States v. Zaid Hassan ABD
Al-Latiff Masud Al Safarini, No. 91-cr-504-03 (D.D.C.
Sept. 12, 2017). Safarini pleaded guilty to ninety-five
charges and was sentenced to three consecutive life sentences
plus twenty-five years. Id. at 3-4.
sentencing, Safarini was transported to the supermax
penitentiary in Florence, Colorado, where he was held for
seven years. Dkt. 1 at 5 (Compl. ¶ 15). Safarini alleges
that while held in the supermax facility, he “had very
little contact with others, largely remaining in solitary
confinement.” Id. at 5. As a result, Safarini
contends that he suffered, and continues to suffer, from
“numerous health and psychological problems, including
cardiac disorders, stress and anxiety disorders.”
Id. He alleges that his placement in the supermax
facility was “totally arbitrary” and
“implemented solely for punishment over and above that
imposed by the court.” Id.
March 10, 2017, Safarini filed this action against various
U.S. and foreign officials and others he alleges were
involved in his purported kidnapping. In two previous orders,
the Court dismissed the foreign defendants: the Government of
the Kingdom of Thailand, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan,
Thailand National Police Agency, Dkt 12; “Thai Airline
International, ” Ahmed Al-Hajayh, and “Unknown
Immigration Officials” for the Government of the
Kingdom of Thailand, Dkt. 14. The remaining defendants
include the FBI special agents that allegedly executed
Plaintiff's arrest and transport to the United
States-Special Agent “Brad, ” Special Agent Nada
Ali, and “One Unknown Special Agent”-as well as
former Attorney General John Ashcroft and former Director of
the FBI Robert Mueller (collectively the “Federal
Defendants”). Dkt. 1 (Compl. ¶¶ 3-13). The
complaint specifies that “the individuals named as
defendants are being sued in their individual
capacities.” Id. (Compl. ¶ 14).
the Prison Litigation Reform Act, the Court is required to
dismiss a “case at any time if” it
“determines that . . . the action . . . is frivolous[,
] malicious[, ] . . . fails to state a claim upon which
relief can be granted[, ] or seeks monetary relief from a
defendant who is immune from such relief.” 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(e)(2). A complaint that is “filed pro
se is ‘to be liberally construed, '”
and, “however inartfully pleaded, must be held to less
stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted by
lawyers.” Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94
(2007) (quoting Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 106
(1976)). But, where “it is patently obvious” that
the plaintiff cannot “prevail on the facts alleged in
his complaint, ” Baker v. Dir., U.S. Parole
Comm'n, 916 F.2d 725, 727 (D.C. Cir. 1990), the
Court may sua sponte dismiss a complaint under
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6), see Baldwin v.
Small Business Admin., 2017 WL 2455026 *3 (D.D.C. June
6, 2017), and, indeed, must do so under the Prison Litigation
Reform Act, 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2).
construed, the complaint purports to allege claims under
Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents of Federal Bureau of
Narcotics, 403 U.S. 388 (1971); the Alien Tort Statute,
28 U.S.C. § 1350; the Federal Tort Claims Act, 28 U.S.C.
§ 2671 et seq.; the Religious Freedom
Restoration Act, 42 U.S.C. § 2000bb et seq.;
the Ku Klux Klan Act, 42 U.S.C. § 1985; the Third and
Fourth Geneva Conventions, 6 U.S.T. 3316, 6 U.S.T. 3516;
various criminal statutes, 18 U.S.C. §§ 1201, 1651;
“[i]nternational laws;” “the extradition
treaty with Thailand;” the Geneva Convention; and
common law fraud. Dkt. 1 at 2, 5-6 (Compl. ¶¶ 1,
16). The Court will consider each of these allegations in
v. Six Unknown Named Agents of Federal Bureau of
Narcotics, 403 U.S. 388 (1971), recognized an implied
private cause of action for damages against federal officials
for alleged violations of the Fourth Amendment. Subsequent
decisions, moreover, have extended that implied cause of
action to violations of the Due Process Clause of the Fifth
Amendment, see Davis v. Passman, 442 U.S. 228
(1979), and to violations of the Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Clause of the Eighth Amendment, see Carlson v.