State Issues 'Infidel' License Plate to UP War Vet

Posted at: 10/22/2013 10:09 AM
Updated at: 10/22/2013 10:52 AM

KINGSFORD, Mich. (AP) - State officials say they've defused a controversy and issued a personalized license plate to an Upper Peninsula man who wanted to use a variation of the word "infidel."

Iraq war veteran Michael Matwyuk of Kingsford says the plate was rejected because officials feared it would offend people. But the secretary of state's office says it was simply an oversight and issued the plate a month ago.

In a court filing Monday, the state wants a federal judge to dismiss a lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan.

Matwyuk's attorney, Dan Korobkin, believes negative publicity is what forced the state to issue the license plate. Matwyuk has letters documenting earlier rejections.

Matwyuk says soldiers were repeatedly called "infidels" or non-believers by enemies in Iraq.

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)