Federal Circuit: Cadet Service Cannot Help Satisfy Five-Year FERS Service Requirement

A political appointee retired from federal service after almost four years of civilian service, relying on advice from a human resources official that he could “buy back” time spent as a cadet at West Point and credit it towards the five years of civilian service required to qualify for a FERS retirement annuity. When OPM found that he was ineligible for an annuity, he appealed to the Merit Systems Protection Board, which affirmed OPM’s decision. The employee appealed. On October 2, 2019, the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit affirmed the Board’s decision.

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Second Circuit: Plausible FTCA Claim Made Where Immigration Detainer Was Imposed without Probable Cause

On September 27, 2013, Luis Hernandez, a U.S. citizen, was arrested and charged with public lewdness, a misdemeanor. While he was being processed in the New York City criminal court system, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Officer W. Outlaw lodged an immigration detainer against him, incorrectly asserting that Hernandez was the subject of an order of removal. The detainer identified Hernandez as an “alien” named “Luis Enrique Hernandez-Martinez” with a nationality of “Honduras.” The detainer requested the city’s department of corrections maintain custody of Hernandez, and the city complied.

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First Circuit: No Need to Correctly Label Legal Theory for OSC Exhaustion

An ICE Supervisory Special Agent delivered a document to a colleague at the direction of his supervisor, the Assistant Special Agent in Charge. The colleague (a Special Agent) later used the document in support of his own whistleblower case against the Agency. After the Agency learned of the Supervisory Special Agent’s involvement in his colleague’s appeal, he was not selected for promotion, and received a lower-than-normal performance appraisal. He then filed a complaint with the Office of Special Counsel, alleging that the agency retaliated against him for providing information to his colleague that was later used in his colleague’s appeal.

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