Meet Today's Most Annoying Thief: Mohamed Bedier
Boo-hoo! Where's my welfare, fruit, salad, clock and free plane ticket?
Mohamed Mahmoud Bedier, a native and citizen of Lebanon, is a thief who likes to complain.
According to court records, Bedier came to the United States and illegally obtained government welfare payments, a crime that prompted federal officials to launch deportation proceedings against him last year.
While in custody in Adelanto and Orange County jails, Bedier demanded vegetarian food to comply with his Muslim religious beliefs, but didn't like the vegetarian food he was given: cheese, beans, peanut butter and eggs when, instead, he preferred certain fruit and salads.
At the Adelanto private prison, he unsuccessfully demanded Halal meat, or meat that is prayed over before the animal is slaughtered.
Later, at OC's Theo Lacy Jail, he received Halal turkey in meals that provided him nearly 3,000 calories per day, but claimed the jail staff lied to him by giving all inmates the same turkey.
In his federal lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security and Orange County Sheriff's Department as well as Sheriff Sandra Hutchens, he also claimed that jail employees laughed and cursed at him, refused to tell him the time so he could properly pray and tortured him by delaying his departure to his homeland.
This month inside the Ronald Reagan Federal Courthouse in Santa Ana, U.S. District Court Judge Cormac J. Carney ruled that the diet provided to Bedier did not violate his religious beliefs and that jail deputies reasonably don't have to tell inmates the time for shift-change, security reasons.
In granting summary judgment for the defendants, Carney also noted that the Islamic Shura Council of Southern California approved the Theo Lacy Jail diet and that immigration detainees are free to pray in the barracks at any time of the day, except for inmate count times.
"Mr. Bedier has not provided evidence that the conditions of his detention were punitive or that the defendants were deliberately indifferent to his health and safety," opined Carney. "Theo Lacy submitted evidence that [immigration] detainees received more favorable treatment than other inmates, were housed separately and provided privileges other inmates did not receive, including more recreation time, additional toiletries, more clothing exchanges and access to computers."
Bedier is now another Middle East problem.
He's already been deported.
And he may get a gift from Carney, who is contemplating whether the whiny thief should pay the winning defendants' legal bills.
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