Torres Rosado v. Rotger Sabat, CIV.00-1899-JP.

CourtUnited States District Courts. 1st Circuit. District of Puerto Rico
Citation204 F.Supp.2d 252
Docket NumberNo. CIV.00-1899-JP.,CIV.00-1899-JP.
PartiesMarta I. TORRES ROSADO, Plaintiff, v. Angel E. ROTGER SABAT, et al., Defendants.
Decision Date07 May 2002

Manuel R. Suarez-Jimenez, San Juan, PR, for plaintiff.

John F. Nevares, Smith & Nevares, San Juan, PR, Salvador J. Antonetti-Stutts, Dept. of Justice, Fed. Lit. Div., San Juan, PR, Luis F. Del Valle-Emanuelli, Garcia & Fernandez, San Juan, PR, Luis V. Villares-Sarmeinto, Sanchez, Betances & Sifre, San Juan, PR, for defendants.


PIERAS, Senior District Judge.


The Court currently has before it co-Defendants Aníbal Torres Rivera, José Fuentes Agostini and Angel Rotger Sabat's Motion for Summary Judgment (docket No. 143). Since more than ten days have elapsed and Plaintiff has not filed an opposition thereto, both motions stand unopposed. See Local Rule 311.5. Therefore, all uncontested facts in the two motions are deemed and accepted as true.1

Co-Defendants allege that summary judgment should be granted in their favor on all counts, and in addition, allege that they are entitled to qualified immunity. For the reasons herein stated, and because the Court finds that no outstanding questions of fact remain so as to create a genuine issue of material fact, co-Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment is hereby GRANTED, and the federal causes of action against them are DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE.


Based on the record and the parties' contentions, and after having completed discovery in the instant matter, the Court finds the following facts to be undisputed.

1. The Plaintiff in this case is Marta I. Torres Rosado, a Special Agent of the Special Investigations Bureau (hereinafter SIB) of the Puerto Rico Justice Department.

2. Said division investigated public employees suspected of being engaged in public corruption.

3. Plaintiff worked for the SIB for a period of approximately fifteen years.

4. Plaintiff occupied a career position and was classified as "Agent III".

5. On October 23, 1998, Plaintiff was the supervisor of a public integrity squad, a designation given to Agent III's who held the trust of the Director of the SIB.

6. Co-Defendant Aníbal Torres named Plaintiff to this position.

7. Plaintiff Torres did not compete for this supervisory position.

8. Plaintiff's immediate supervisor until October 21, 1998, was Nolan Pérez.

9. Senator Aníbal Marrero Pérez was being investigated by the SIB during the month of and prior to October 1998.

10. Plaintiff Rosado was in charge of this investigation.

11. On October 16, 1998, Plaintiff wrote a memorandum to co-Defendant Torres Rivera in which she expressed concern about the paralyzed status of the investigation.

12. Plaintiff states that co-Defendant Torres Rivera did not ask her to stop or paralyze the investigation.

13. Plaintiff states that this memo was for co-Defendant Torres Rivera's knowledge, that she did not intend this memo to be known to others.

14. As a result of the October 16, 1998 memorandum, Defendant Torres Rivera held a meeting with Plaintiff Torres on the afternoon of October 23, 1998.

15. Also present at the meeting on October 23, 1998, was José Ramos Román.

16. At that meeting, co-Defendant Torres Rivera gave Plaintiff a memorandum in response to her memo of October 16, 1998.

17. At the October 23, 1999 meeting, co-Defendant Torres Rivera handed Plaintiff a memorandum stating, "In the face of your assertion, I have no other alternative but to withdraw my trust as a supervisor of Section 3, GID" 18. Co-Defendant Torres Rivera also re-assigned her and removed her from the Pérez Marrero investigation.

19. At said meeting, Plaintiff Torres requested vacation leave, and filed a request.

20. CO-Defendant Torres Rivera told Plaintiff she could have the vacation leave subject to her handing in a report concerning case NIE-98-111, the case that had prompted the October 16, 1998 memo.

21. Mr. José Ramos signed the form recommending the vacation leave.

22. On October 26, 1998, co-Defendant Torres Rivera went to José Ramos' office, and inquired if Plaintiff had filed the report.

23. Co-Defendant Torres Rivera denied Plaintiff's vacation leave, writing on the vacation leave request that Plaintiff could not enjoy her vacation until she handed in the report.

24. Co-Defendant Torres Rivera had not seen or spoken with Plaintiff Torres since October 23, 1998 until he saw her in depositions or hearings related with the events of this lawsuit.

25. On October 26, 1998, co-Defendant Torres Rivera wrote a memo to Plaintiff Torres where he again placed her in charge of investigation NIE 98-111.

26. That same day after lunch, Mr. José Ramos received a telephone call from Plaintiff, and she informed him that her son was sick and that she could not come in to meet with Co-Defendant Deputy Attorney General Angel Rotger Sabat, or draft the report.

27. Sometime after October 26, 1998, Plaintiff Torres delivered a medical certificate dated October 25, 1998.

28. This certification stated that the patient was under medical treatment on October 25, 1998, due to chicken pox.

29. On November 4, 1998, El Vocero published nine articles related to Senator Aníbal Marrero Pérez.

30. Plaintiff stated she never spoke to the press or to Javier Maymí, a reporter from El Vocero, concerning the articles published by that paper which Plaintiff claims were the basis of a retaliation claim.

31. November 16, 1998 was co-Defendant Torres Rivera's last day as Director of the SIB.

32. On November 16, 1998, co-Defendant Torres Rivera wrote a memo to co-Defendant Attorney General José Fuentes Agostini requesting an investigation and evaluation of Plaintiff's conduct to determine if disciplinary action should be taken against her.

33. Co-Defendant Torres Rivera has never seen or spoken to co-Defendant José Fuentes Agostini since Torres Rivera left the SIB on November 17, 1998.

34. Inspector General Inés Carrau recused herself from the internal administrative investigation because of her friendship with Plaintiff.

35. On November 17, 1998, co-Defendant José Fuentes Agostini instructed Itala Rivera Buonomo to intervene as Inspector General in carrying out an administrative investigation regarding the conduct of Plaintiff Torres Rosado.

36. On November 20, 1998, Plaintiff returned to work, and submitted medical evidence regarding her and her son's condition.

37. On that same day, Plaintiff submitted the report requested by former Director Torres Rivera regarding the investigation of Senator Pérez Marrero.

38. On November 20, 1998, Plaintiff Torres received a hand-delivered letter from Itala Rivera Buonomo, notifying her of the administrative complaint that had been lodged against her for insubordination and leave of absence from work.

39. Plaintiff was absent from work between October 26, 1998 and November 20, 1998.

40. Plaintiff's first report regarding the status of the case was unsatisfactory.

41. Plaintiff presented a second report regarding the status of Senator Marrero's investigation on November 24, 1998.

42. While Plaintiff was away from the office, a newspaper article appeared in El Vocero newspaper that allegedly discredited Plaintiff.

43. The article mentioned that some spiritism or witchcraft (in Spanish, "santería") material had been found in her car, and that it was evident that Plaintiff was "doing spiritual jobs" against some members of the government, including co-Defendant Torres Rivera.

44. Plaintiff was receiving confidential information from a source regarding alleged unlawful activities of Senator Marrero Pérez.

45. Plaintiff reported to the State Insurance Fund on November 25, 1998.

46. On December 9, 1998, Itala Rivera Buonomo handed in her preliminary report regarding the administrative investigation of Agent Marta Torres Rosado.

47. The report concluded that Plaintiff Torres Rosado had incurred in insubordination and leave of absence from work.

48. On January 28, 1999, co-Defendant José Fuentes Agostini informed Plaintiff through a letter that beginning that day, she was suspended from her job with pay.

49. Said letter also advised her of her right to appeal the decision.

50. On April 9, 1999, an administrative hearing was held where Plaintiff Torres, accompanied by her lawyer, was able to present evidence and testimony in her favor.

51. Plaintiff claims that the administrative hearing was a sham.

52. The hearing officer, Pablo Montaner, Esq., stated under penalty of perjury, that he based his decision on the law and the evidence presented.

53. The hearing officer rendered his report on May 19, 1999, and concluded that Plaintiff Torres had incurred in an act of insubordination and leave of absence from work.

54. On June 30, 1999, a certified letter was sent to Plaintiff Torres informing her of her destitution and her right to appeal the decision.

55. On November 15, 1999, Plaintiff sued her supervisor, Aníbal Torres Rivera in the Puerto Rico Court of First Instance, San Juan Part, for defamation and money damages.

56. As a result of the lawsuit filed in the Commonwealth court, Plaintiff was reinstated to her job with back pay in or around June, 2001.

57. Plaintiff is a practicing Catholic.

58. Agents for the SIB must name their sources to their supervisors, to the Director of the SIB, and to the Attorney General, if so requested. Not naming their source could jeopardize and investigation.


Rule 56(c) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides for the entry of summary judgment where "the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law." Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c); Pagano v. Frank, 983 F.2d 343, 347 (1st Cir.1993); Lipsett v. University of Puerto Rico, 864 F.2d 881, 894 (1st Cir.198...

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9 cases
  • Torres-Rosado v. Rotger-Sabat
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (1st Circuit)
    • July 2, 2003
    ...assertions supporting it, to be unopposed, because plaintiff failed to file timely oppositions to them. See Torres Rosado v. Rotger Sabat, 204 F.Supp.2d 252, 253 & n. 1 (D.P.R.2002). Such oppositions are required by the district court's local rules. See D.P.R. R. 311.5, 311.12. This court h......
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    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of Puerto Rico
    • June 8, 2012
    ...of corruption. It is well-established that governmental corruption is a matter of public concern. See, e.g., Torres Rosado v. Rotger Sabat, 204 F.Supp.2d 252, 260 (D.P.R.2002). However, she has failed to allege sufficient facts to show that she uttered this speech as a public citizen. The S......
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    • U.S. District Court — District of Puerto Rico
    • March 31, 2008
    ...motion for summary judgment. See Mercado-Alicea v. Puerto Rico Tourism Co., 396 F.3d 46 (1st Cir.2005); see also Torres Rosado v. Rotger Sabat, 204 F.Supp.2d 252 (D.P.R. 2002). Pursuant to Local Rule 56(e), of United States District Court for the District of Puerto [f]acts contained in a su......
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    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of Massachusetts
    • January 29, 2003
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