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Judge: Firing of former ALE director was political

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RALEIGH, N.C. -

An administrative law judge says the administration of GOP Gov. Pat McCrory fired the former Alcohol Law Enforcement director because he's a Democrat.

The News & Observer of Raleigh reported (http://bit.ly/1fZaUg2) that Judge Fred Morrison Jr. ordered Tuesday that former ALE Director John Ledford be reinstated as an ALE agent. The judge also said Ledford should get back pay to the date of his dismissal and be reimbursed $50,000 for attorneys' fees.

At the end of 2012, before the McCrory administration took over, Ledford sought to be reassigned from ALE director to agent. Ledford was fired in April for "unacceptable personal conduct" because of the job transfer.

Democrat Beverly Perdue served as governor before McCrory.

The state can appeal the ruling.

Information from: The News & Observer, http://www.newsobserver.com

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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