Farting barrister who sued CPS after colleague asked him to stop persistent flatulence, loses case

Mr Tarique Mohammed told an employment tribunal, when suing for harassment, that medication was the root cause of his ‘repetitive flatulence’ in the work place.

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A barrister who attempted to sue the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) after work colleagues complained about his ‘farting’ when working together, has lost his legal case.

Mr Tarique Mohammed told an employment tribunal, when suing for harassment, that medication was the root cause of his ‘repetitive flatulence’ in the work place.

He reportedly said comments from his colleagues were “embarrassing” and also a violation of dignity, though the panel found it was an entirely reasonable request to ask Mr Mohammed to stop.

A number of other allegations were made against his former co-worker, including claims of water bottles being thrown away. Claims of disability discrimination were also thrown out by the panel in Berkshire.

The CPS says it accepts it treated Mr Mohammed unfairly by not allowing him to work from home two days a week and leave work at 4pm to help him manage his condition.

His heart condition meant he had to take daily medication, the side-effects of which meant he had to remain at home for several hours after taking it. In 2016, he began sharing an office with Mr McGorry, where the persistent flatulence was raised.

“Mr McGorry was aware the claimant had had a heart attack but he was not aware of what medication the claimant was taking or that flatulence was a side-effect of the medication,” the tribunal was told.

“There were repeated incidents of flatulence in the quiet room. On one occasion Mr McGorry asked [Mr Mohammed]: ‘Do you have to do that Tarique?’”

In February 2016 he was moved to another team that meant he did not have to attend court and was asked to work one day a week in Brighton, East Sussex, more than one hour’s drive from Guildford.

He launched a grievance, which concluded that the CPS should have made allowances for him, and went on sick leave. His employment was terminated in April 2020.

The tribunal threw out Mohammed’s claims of disability-related harassment and victimisation. “Many of the incidents about which [he] complains were unrelated to his disability … or were caused or aggravated by [him] overreacting,” the panel said.

Of the flatulence, the tribunal commented: “Mr McGorry’s questions to [Mr Mohammed] were not asked with the purpose of violating [his] dignity or creating such an environment. It was not an unreasonable question to ask, when there had been repeated incidents of flatulence in a small office."