A prominent human rights activist and Saudi dissident is suing Twitter for allegedly hiring two men who acted as spies for the Saudi government. The suit accuses Twitter of negligence in its failure to detect the two spies inside the company — who are currently under indictment from U.S. federal prosecutors — and prevent them from stealing personal information for the Saudi government.
Ali Al-Ahmed, the leader of the human-rights investigation agency Institute for Gulf Affairs, is known as a prominent critic of the current Saudi regime and was granted asylum to remain in the United States in 1998. The suit filed Oct. 14 in the Northern District of California names both Twitter and the two alleged spies as defendants; Al-Ahmed already has a second suit underway against Twitter in the Southern District of New York, where he is claiming that the company’s hiring of the two men eventually led to the imprisonment and death of activists in Saudi Arabia.
The two men named in the suit have both been indicted by U.S. federal prosecutors for working at Twitter and passing private information to the Saudi government from 2013 to 2015, one as a site reliability engineer and the other as a media partnerships manager.