By Associated Press - Friday, July 29, 2016

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) - A Charlottesville man has filed a federal lawsuit after he was removed from a City Council meeting in which he called Muslims “monstrous maniacs” and argued that allowing Muslim refugees into Central Virginia invites criminal activity.

News outlets report that Joe Draego was removed from a City Council meeting on July 20 after accusing officials and community members of willfully ignoring the threat he says Muslim refugees pose.

Mayor Mike Signer cut Draego’s remarks short, citing council rules prohibiting defamatory attacks on groups or individuals during the public comment period.

Draego filed a lawsuit Thursday challenging those rules. The lawsuit says Draego’s First and Fourteenth Amendment rights were violated and that the rule is “vague and overbroad.”

The city said in a statement that Draego’s comments were “intimidating and disruptive.”

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