UA files $500,000 suit against disgruntled former employees

By Michelle Roberts

Arizona Daily Wildcat

Two former employees who have sued the UA 12 times in the last six years are now sitting on the other side of the legal fence.

The university filed a civil suit last Friday against R. Charles Bryfogle and Linda Anne Taraldson, both of whom were terminated by the university in 1990.

Barry Corey, the attorney hired by the university to handle the case, said the two have filed a total of 12 suits against the university and have been given access to 6 million pages of public records.

Most of the suits have centered on wrongful discharge accusations, but they have also sued the university for libel, violation of the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) Act and accused it of having a "blacklist."

Some of the cases are still pending, but none of the suits have been successful so far.

In the suit filed by Corey, the university alleged that the defendants prevented the university from attending to business and suffered damages of at least $500,000 in attorney's fees and costs related to the information requests.

Bryfogle called the university's action "the worst mistake they could make."

"They want to get back from me the half-million dollars they blew," he said. "The university finally realized what I was doing to them and they don't like it."

Bryfogle said all of his information requests were legitimate and that he simply asked to view public documents. He said the university complied by copying those documents as well as documents he didn't need.

Now, he said, they're trying to bill him for the money used to make those copies.

"I will keep asking for documents until such time as I am told it's inappropriate," Bryfogle said. "I have never been told by any judge that my requests are inappropriate."

Corey, of Corey, Farrell, Kime and Bromiel, P.C., said the university is seeking financial compensation, an injunction restraining the defendants from filing more suits against the UA, punitive damages and court judgment relieving the university of an obligation to provide more documents.

Thomas Thompson, an attorney for the university, said suits are inevitable when an institution has as many employees as the UA does, but that the university should not be forced to occupy its resources with nonsense.

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