DETROIT (CN) - A Michigan man sued Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and the Federal Reserve, claiming their $40 billion bailout of American International Group is unconstitutional, and offensive, because AIG "engages in Shariah-based Islamic religious activities that are anti-Christian, anti-Jewish, and anti-American."
He cites AIG's "Takaful Insurance plans," which allegedly are run "in accordance with the Sharia law."
The taxpayer bailout of AIG gave the federal government 80% interest in the company. "The use of these taxpayer funds to approve, promote, endorse, support, and fund these Shariah-based Islamic religious activities violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment," Kevin Murray claims in Federal Court.
Murray describes himself as a former U.S. Marine, and a "devout Catholic," who served in Iraq.
He claims the "Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 ... provides no mechanism by which Defendant Paulson, the Fed, or any other officer or agency of the federal government could police the expenditure of taxpayer funds to ensure that they are not being used for an impermissible purpose, such as funding Islamic beliefs
and practices as set forth in this Complaint."
The complaint continues: "An example of Shariah-compliant financing offered by AIG is Takaful Insurance plans. According to AIG, Takaful Insurance is '[i]nsurance that avoids prohibited elements in accordance with the Sharia law.' According to AIG, its Takaful products are Islamic because, inter alia, AIG 'do[es] not invest in anything that is haram' and it 'do[es] not borrow, lend or enter into any financial transaction that is unIslamic.' According to AIG, 'haram' is '[p]rohibited elements in Islam according to Sharia.'
"The Takaful Insurance business of AIG is pervasively sectarian. Its secular purposes and its Shariah-based Islamic religious mission are inextricably intertwined. Consequently, federal aid in the form of taxpayer funds is flowing directly to a pervasively sectarian entity.
"According to AIG, it is 'expanding its scope and vision to global proportions providing a range of Takaful products, including property & casualty, energy, accident & health, financial lines, motor, [and] personal contents just to name a few. The phenomenal growth of the Takaful market is something that [AIG] as a market leader recognize[s].' AIG's Shariah-compliant financing 'benefit[s] from AIG's disciplined global underwriting and standards and 89 years of experience in delivering innovative insurance solutions to the international community through a
network that currently spans more than 130 countries and jurisdictions, reaching 74 million customers.' AIG has a 'global expansion strategy' for its Shariah-compliant financing."
Murray wants the federal takeover of AIG declared unconstitutional, and expenditure of any more money on it enjoined. He is represented by Robert Muise with the Thomas More Law Center.