LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Attorneys for a former NASA mission specialist who claims he was demoted and ultimately fired for his beliefs in intelligent design are expected to deliver their opening statements on Monday.

Computer specialist David Coppedge, a former Jet Propulsion Labs employee who once held the title of “team leader” on the Cassini mission to Saturn, filed the lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court.

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Coppedge, who is an evangelical Christian, claims he lost his title in 2009 before he was fired last year for promoting the theory that irreducible complexity in organic life and other scientific markers suggest that life in the universe could not have been the result of the evolutionary model of random mutations over millions of years.

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The lawsuit also alleges Coppedge was targeted after distributing informational DVDs about intelligent design to co-workers.

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JPL officials have denied any discrimination.