Suit against Imam of NY Mosque Due in Court in NJ

By Staff | September 15, 2010 | 12:45 PM EDT

(AP) - A dispute over whether an imam who plans to build a mosque near ground zero ignored safety hazards at property he owns in northern New Jersey is headed to court.

Parties in the lawsuit against Feisal Abdul Rauf are scheduled to appear Wednesday in state Superior Court.

A lawsuit filed by Union City claims Rauf ignored numerous code violations at two apartment buildings he owns. Union City is just across the Hudson River from New York and has about 70,000 residents.

The lawsuit claims Rauf didn't fix 12 fire code violations the year before one building caught fire. It says parts of the other building have been without electricity, smoke detectors and fire alarms because Rauf's company didn't pay utility bills.

A spokesman tells The Associated Press the imam won't comment on the lawsuit.