PEORIA, Ill. — A former FBI agent fired for refusing to investigate peace groups opposed to U.S. policy in Central America is fighting to reclaim his job, and the full pension that was only 10 months away.
John C. (Jack) Ryan, 49, is negotiating with the FBI for reinstatement, and a congressman and an administrative hearing panel are looking into the case.
Ryan had planned to retire on his 50th birthday, next June 19, when he would have been eligible for full retirement after more than 20 years of service.
But he was fired Sept. 11 when his personal opposition to U.S. support of the Contra rebels in Nicaragua conflicted with an order to investigate Silo Plowshares, a loose-knit anti-nuclear coalition whose members were suspected of vandalizing military recruiting offices in the Chicago area.
Hopes to Salvage Pension
Ryan said Tuesday that being ousted before his 50th birthday left him with no immediate benefits "that I know of," but he hopes to salvage his FBI pension by seeking reinstatement.
He said he would be willing to accept about any position offered and believes the FBI would have a slot for him which would not conflict with his personal beliefs that U.S. involvement in Central America is "violent, illegal and immoral."
Ryan is entitled to a Civil Service pension. But it's much less than his FBI retirement benefits, and he can't apply for it until he reaches age 62.