Federal Manager's Daily Report

A recent federal court ruling reaffirms a federal agency’s authority to indefinitely suspend an employee who had been indicted on charges that could lead to imprisonment if convicted.

The case involved a suspension ordered after an employee was indicted on allegations of making false statements; the agency decided that it was not in its best interests to allow the employee to continue working during the investigation and judicial proceedings, according to an MSPB summary.


It said that the court ruling affirmed both the MSPB hearing officer and the full merit board in upholding the suspension, “stating that it has repeatedly made clear that an indictment for a crime for which a sentence of imprisonment may be imposed will, as a general rule, provide reasonable cause for an agency to believe that the employee has committed such a crime.”

In the process, the summary said, the court also denied the employee’s assertion that the agency had violated due process rights by not providing adequate notice of the specific charges.