You never know who's listening.
Federal Judge Frederic Block apparently mouthed off about a discrimination case he was overseeing last week in New York City.
He did it minutes before closing arguments — and in earshot of one of the jurors, the New York Daily News reported.
Because of Block's comment,about a lawsuit brought by a Bangladeshi man against the Italian restaurant where he had worked, the juror who heard what the 80-year-old judge said had to be dismissed from the case.
Judge Frederic Block. (Image source: screengrab via YouTube)
What exactly did Block say?
From the Daily News:
“I just was walking out using the facilities in the hall, Judge [Jack] Weinstein’s chambers are right next to mine, and [he] says, ‘How are you?’ and I said, ‘I’m OK, I’m doing a little stupid trial,’” Block explained. “Unbeknownst to me, Juror No. 2 might have heard me say that.”
The lawyer for plaintiff Mohammad Muktadir apparently couldn’t believe his ears.
“I’m sorry, what was said to [Weinstein]?” asked lawyer Christopher Van De Water.
“I said I have a stupid little trial,” Block replied.
In the case, according to the Daily News, Muktadir claimed that he had been sexually harassed by a male chef, called a “smelly Bangladeshi bum” by co-workers and that the meals served to employees by the Italian restaurant contained pork, which he, as a practicing Muslim, could not eat.
Despite Block's awkward comment and the ejection of Juror No. 2, the jury took 15 minutes to deliberate and squashed Muktadir's complaint, throwing out the case, the Daily News reported.
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