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DUMAS v. MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL PROPERTIES
June 21, 2000
GRETCHEN DUMAS, AS GUARDIAN AD LITEM FOR NICHOLAS CHASET, ON BEHALF OF THEMSELVES AND ALL OTHERS SIMILARLY SITUATED, PLAINTIFFS,
MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL PROPERTIES, INC., MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL PLAYERS ASSN., ET AL., DEFENDANT.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Brewster, Judge
Plaintiffs herein, alleged residents of New York and California, claim to
be purchasers, or the guardian ad litem of purchasers, of trading cards.
Plaintiffs allege that they purchased trading cards in the hope of winning
"chase"*fn1 cards, redeemable in bonus cash prizes. Defendants are
alleged residents of New York, California, Virginia, and Canada. On April
18, 2000, this Court ordered Plaintiffs to show cause as to why the claim
brought under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act
("RICO"), 18 U.S.C. § 1961-1968, should not be dismissed for lack
of standing under § 1964(c) of RICO. The hearing for this Court's
Order to Show Cause ("OSC") was held on June 7, 2000 with counsel for all
The Court re-reviewed all pleadings, motions, and briefs heretofore filed
as well as all briefs filed in response to the OSC. The Court having heard
oral argument by counsel and being fully advised in the premises, now
therefore issues the following ORDER:
(1) The prior order of May 14, 1999 denying Defendants' Fed.
R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss is hereby vacated
nunc pro tunc;
(2) The RICO claim is dismissed pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P.
12(b)(6) without leave to amend on the ground that
Plaintiffs lack standing as required by § 1964(c) of
(3) All pendant claims are dismissed without prejudice
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1367.
(4) The Clerk shall close the file.
A. Standing Requirement under 18 U.S.C. § 1964 (c)
Pursuant to this Court's April 18, 2000 Order to Show Cause, the issue
before this Court is whether Plaintiffs have met the requirement of
18 U.S.C. § 1964 (c) in order to have standing to bring a lawsuit
against Defendants for their alleged gambling activity. Standing under
18 U.S.C. § 1964 (c) requires an ability to state a claim for harm to a
person's "business or property" resulting from conduct violative of
18 U.S.C. § 1962.
Section 1964(c) provides in pertinent part: "Any person injured in his
business or property by reason of a violation of section 1962 of this
chapter may sue therefore in any appropriate United States district court
and shall recover threefold the damages he sustains and the cost of the
suit, including a reasonable attorney's fee. . . ." 18 U.S.C. § 1964 (c)
(emphasis added). Federal courts have established that RICO was "intended
to combat organized crime, not to provide a federal cause of action and
treble damages to every tort plaintiff" Oscar v. University Students
Cooperative Assn., 965 F.2d at 783, 786 (9th Cir. 1992). Although this
additional requirement of ...
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