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CA Jury Awards Passenger $7.2 Million After Delta Sold Him 4 Bottles Of Wine & Flagged Him For Frequent Use Of Lavatory


LOS ANGELES, CA, UNITED STATES, December 22, 2021 / — Bandary v. Delta Air Lines, Inc., 5:17-cv-01065-DSF-AS

Two months after seeing his favorable verdict put on hold, Litigation, P.C.’s client Atef Bandary has received judgment on a $7.225 million verdict awarded by a unanimous Central District of California jury in his lawsuit against Delta Air Lines.

Mr. Bandary, an Egyptian-American is a man who, over 20 years ago, fled the Middle East to flee persecution and was granted asylum in the U.S.

The unanimous federal jury verdict vindicates Mr. Bandary who sued Delta after a horrific, injurious experience in 2015 in which he was retaliated against for complaining about poor customer service. A flight attendant refused to let him cut the passengers ahead of him in the plane for water and a snack so he could take his medications.

After he complained to another empathetic flight attendant, the second flight attendant gave him a sandwich and a bottle of wine “on the house”.

Then, the second flight attendant sold him four more bottles of wine in the span of about 2.5 hours.

His resulting frequent restroom use was brought to the attention of the lead flight attendant who, with 45 minutes left in the flight, pulled Mr. Bandary out of the restroom line by name where he was waiting to relieve his diarrhea and told him to return to his seat for the rest of the flight.

Bandary protested. He was cornered in the back of the plane where he fell down, then was “man-handled” and suffered a shoulder injury that pains him to this day. The crew eventually cuffed him so tightly that one of his wrists bled. While in cuffs, his pants fell to the floor and remained there exposing his private parts until crew alas lifted his pants at his request.

Worse yet, Mr. Bandary was later charged with assaulting and intimidating the crew — charges of which Mr. Bandary was later acquitted. But the jury in the civil case heard no evidence about the criminal prosecution of Bandary.

“This federal court judgment confirms what we already knew,” Litigation, P.C. lead counsel Zein Obagi, Jr. said, “that the humiliating injuries suffered by Mr. Bandary at the hands of a xenophobic Delta crew was not only unacceptable, but caused him severe irreparable physical and psychological damage in light of prior trauma in Egypt.”

The court’s judgment also respects the diligence of the federal jury, which served with facemasks and social distancing protocols to carefully deliberate not once, but twice.

Obagi also thanked jury consultant Harry Plotkin for developing a basic “customer service” and “respect”-focused theme for trial that resonated with the jury.

Litigation, P.C. is a civil litigation law firm that focuses its practice on representing employees in the workplace with regarding to claims of unlawful employment discrimination, retaliation and wrongful termination.


Zein E. Obagi Jr.

With more than a decade of experience as a licensed attorney serving Californians, Zein E. Obagi, Jr. carries a reputation as a game-changing fierce advocate. He fights for employees who have fallen victim to hostile employers and for individuals who have lost assets to dishonest business partners. With his combination of experience, passion and willingness to bring the full power of the law to bear for his clients, Zein has built a firm that delivers on its credo to each of its clients. After working for a variety of firms in Los Angeles, including one of the largest and most prestigious in the city, Zein founded what is now Litigation, P.C. in 2012. In the years since, Zein has built anenergetic and highly skilled team who specializes in righting the wrongs of discrimination, unlawful retaliation, wrongful termination and other abuses in the workplace, as well as protecting clients’ interests in the world of business in California. With Zein leading the way, the attorney at Litigation, P.C. treats each client as if he or she were the firm’s only client, delivering time and again and attaining awards at times in the millions of dollars.

While Zein makes social justice and fighting for the little guy hallmarks of his practice, he also lives by the same values he has woven into the fabric of Litigation, P.C.. For instance, being raised with six sisters, Zein understands that men and women are equal in every way. He continues to advance this belief not only in his practice, but through his work with the Los Angeles County Bar Association (LACBA). In July 2020 the organization appointed Zein to the President’s Advisory Committee on Women in the Legal Profession. Among Zein’s other public-service endeavors are a trio of trips to the Katrina-ravaged Gulf Region to supply critical pro bono legal aid as part of the inaugural and two subsequent Legal Aid Alternative Breaks Projects; volunteer work with the Los Angeles 5 (LA5) Chapter of Rotary Club International, and two runs as a candidate for U.S. Congress in California’s 33rd District.

A graduate of UC Berkeley (BA, political science) and the University of Southern California, Gould School of Law (JD), Zein enjoys admission to practice law throughout the State of California; the U.S. District Court for the Central, Southern, Eastern and Northern Districts of California; the Ninth Circuit Courts of Appeals; and the Supreme Court of the United States. Zein also serves as Co-Chair of Programs with the LACBA Small Firm Section, and in 2020 was appointed to another LACBA committee, the Judicial Appointments Committee, which responds to requests by the Governor to evaluate individuals under consideration for appointment to the Superior Court of California bench

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