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Abdulmutallab v. Barr

United States District Court, D. Colorado

September 18, 2019

UMAR FAROUK ABDULMUTALLAB, Plaintiff,
v.
WILLIAM P. BARR,[1] Attorney General of the United States, in his official capacity, FEDERAL BUREAU OF PRISONS, and JOHN DOES 1 THROUGH 20, in their official capacities, Defendants.

          ORDER ON RECOMMENDATION

          Raymond P. Moore, Judge.

         This matter is before the Court on the Recommendation of United States Magistrate Judge (the “Recommendation”) (ECF No. 121) to grant in part and deny in part as moot Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss (ECF No. 79). Plaintiff filed an objection (the “Objection”) to which Defendants filed a Response (ECF Nos. 129, 131). The matter is ripe for resolution.

         I. LEGAL STANDARD

         A. Review of a Magistrate Judge’s Recommendations

         When a magistrate judge issues a recommendation on a dispositive matter, Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b)(3) requires that the district court judge “determine de novo any part of the magistrate judge’s [recommendation] that has been properly objected to.” Upon review, “[t]he district court judge may accept, reject, or modify the recommendation; receive further evidence; or return the matter to the magistrate judge with instructions.” Id. In the absence of a timely and specific objection, “the district court may review a magistrate’s report under any standard it deems appropriate.” Summers v. Utah, 927 F.2d 1165, 1167 (10th Cir. 1991) (citations omitted); see also Fed. R. Civ. P. 72 Advisory Committee’s Note (“When no timely objection is filed, the court need only satisfy itself that there is no clear error on the face of the record in order to accept the recommendation.”).

         B. Motions to Dismiss

         The Magistrate Judge correctly set forth the standards for motions filed under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(1) and 12(b)(6). Accordingly, the Court incorporates them by reference.

         II. BACKGROUND

         No party has objected to the Magistrate Judge’s “Statement of the Case.” Upon its review, the Court finds no clear error and accepts the statement. In order to provide context to this Order, the Court nonetheless provides a brief summary of the case.

         Plaintiff was convicted for the attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction on a commercial airliner that landed in Detroit, Michigan, and the attempted murder of the 289 people on board. Plaintiff is from Nigeria and a Muslim. The United States government believes that Plaintiff was recruited to commit his crimes of conviction by Anwar Al-Awlaki, who was killed by a United States drone in Yemen.

         Plaintiff is housed at the United States Penitentiary–Administrative Maximum (“ADX”) in Florence, Colorado, and serving four terms of life imprisonment plus 50 years for his convictions. Prior to Plaintiff’s transfer to ADX, in March 2012, the United States government placed Plaintiff under Special Administrative Measures (“SAMs”). The SAMs have been renewed every year, with some modifications.

         Plaintiff brought this action asserting the following 14 claims for relief arising from his conditions of confinement at ADX:

Claim 1: Plaintiff’s transfer to ADX in 2012 in deprivation of his liberty without due process in violation of the Fifth Amendment;
Claims 2-4: The imposition of SAMs which deny free speech, free association, and familial association, in violation of the First Amendment;
Claim 5: The imposition of SAMs which violate substantive due process under the Fifth Amendment;
Claim 6: Retaliation against Plaintiff by confining him in Special Housing Unit in Range 13, for engaging in a hunger strike to protest his conditions of confinement in violation of the First Amendment;
Claim 7: Denial of Plaintiff’s right to refuse medical treatment, i.e., the force feeding of nutrients related to his hunger strikes, in violation of the Fifth Amendment;
Claim 8: Denial of access to group prayer in violation of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (“RFRA”);
Claim 9: Failure to provide meaningful access to an imam in violation of RFRA;
Claim 10: Denial of a halal diet in violation of RFRA;
Claim 11: Responding to hunger striking by force feeding in violation of RFRA;
Claim 12: Force feeding non-halal nutritional supplement in ...

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