For immediate release November 12, 2003
Contact: Regis McClelland
100 Ross Street Pittsburgh, PA 15219
PITTSBURGH ATTORNEY FILES FEDERAL LAWSUIT AGAINST SADDAM HUSSEIN PITTSBURGH,
November 12 — Attorney Regis M. McClelland, partner of the law firm Harrington, Schweers, Dattilo & McClelland, filed a lawsuit in federal court today against Saddam Hussein and the government of Iraq on behalf of Abdullah Alkhuzai, a former Iraqi citizen who is seeking damages under the Torture Victim Protection Act and the Alien Tort Claims Act.
The lawsuit claims that, at the age of 20, Mr. Alkhuzai was imprisoned and tortured by Saddam Hussein's Baathist regime. Specifically, the lawsuit states that Mr. Alkhuzai was the victim of stabbings, electrocutions, beatings, starvation, dehydration, and confinement in subhuman conditions. In addition, he and his family were threatened with execution, and his brother was killed by soldiers of Saddam Hussein. Mr. Alkhuzai is now a legal resident in the United States.
According to Attorney McClelland, persons such as Mr. Alkhuzai, who are tortured and illegally imprisoned by terrorist regimes, are entitled to be fully compensated by governments and parties in violation of international law.
"The purpose of the Torture Victim Act and other protective international laws, is to discourage tyrannical and terroristic regimes from mistreating and torturing their own citizens and prisoners," explained McClelland. "The existence of such laws is vital in deterring war crimes and human rights violations," he added.
The legal action seeks compensatory and punitive damages. The lawsuit names as defendants the Republic of Iraq; Saddam Hussein and the estates of his sons; Ali Hassan al-Majid, also known as "Chemical Ali" and eight former Iraqi officials who are in U.S. custody.
Representing injured people since 1951, Harrington, Schweers, Dattilo & McClelland is a plaintiff's law firm based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Areas of practice include: medical malpractice, negligence, toxic exposure, maritime, aviation and employment law.