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WOODRUFF v. MUELLER

March 26, 2003

KEVIN PAUL WOODRUFF, PLAINTIFF,
v.
ROBERT S MUELLER III, ET AL, DEFENDANTS



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Vaughn R. Walker, United States District Judge

ORDER

This order addresses motions pending in the two above-captioned cases, which the court related on November 5, 2002. See C 02-3307 VRW (02-3307) Doc #16; C 02-3460 VRW (02-3460) Doc #23. Defendants in each case have filed motions to dismiss. 02-3307 Docs ##4, 11; 02-3460 Docs ##5, 6, 29, 31. Plaintiff, acting pro Se, has filed in each case a motion for discovery of the character of the United States District Court. 02-3307 Doc #14; 02-3460 Doc #20. Plaintiff has also filed in each case a motion for summary judgment. 02-3307 Doc #17; 02-3460 Doc #24. In addition, plaintiff has filed a motion to strike defendants' motions to dismiss in 02-3307. 02-3307 Doc #25. And he has filed motions for entry of default against three defendants named in 02-3460. 02-3460 Docs ##35, 36, 37.

For the reasons detailed below, defendants' motions to dismiss in both cases (02-3307 Docs ##4, 11; 02-3460 Docs ##5, 6, 29, 31) are GRANTED. Plaintiffs' motions for summary judgment in both cases (02-3307 Doc #17; 02-3460 Doc #24) are DENIED. Plaintiff's motion to strike (02-3307 Doc #25) is DENIED. And plaintiff's motions for entry of default (02-3460 Docs ##35, 36, 37) are DENIED. Because the court concludes that these matters are suitable for determination without oral argument, the court VACATES all hearings scheduled in these two actions. See Civ LR 7-1(b).

I

The complaint in each action alleges misconduct by defendants relating to plaintiff's criminal conviction on four counts of interference with commerce by threats or violence under the Hobbs Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1951 (a). See CR 93-438 VRW.

A

In the complaint in the first-filed action (02-3307), plaintiff alleges that "Defendants on August 5, 1993, brought a fraudulent instrument, to wit[] an indictment/complaint, in `some kind of hearing', alleged court, with appraisers and collectors, imposters, impostors [sic], alleged judges [] in a quasi judicial, quasi criminal setting, alleging felonies, when they are corporation infractions." See 02-3307 Compl (02-3307 Doc #1, Attach) at 3, ¶ 2. Plaintiff alleges that defendants conspired to defraud plaintiff, apparently by aiding and abetting his seizure by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which conduct plaintiff alleges was in some unspecified way unlawful. See id. The complaint seeks relief for "security fraud, extortion, battery, slander, negligence, conflict of interest and malice. See id at 3-4, ¶ 2. Plaintiff seeks immediate release from incarceration and damages of $111,500,000. See id at 4-5, Prayer.

Plaintiff filed the complaint in Alameda County superior court on May 29, 2002. See 02-3307 Not of Rem (Doc #1) at 2, ¶ 1. Service was effected on defendants Valliere, Meagher, Lawrence, Jacobsen and the United States on June 10, 2002. See id at 2, ¶ 2. There is no indication that service was effected on any of the other defendants. Those defendants who were served timely removed the action to federal court pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1331 and 1346.

Pursuant to authorization under 28 C.F.R. § 15.3, the chief of the civil division of the United States Attorney's Office then certified that defendant Mueller was acting in his capacity as United States Attorney and defendants Valliere, Meagher, Lawrence and Jacobsen were acting in their official capacities as assistant United States attorneys in all matter relating to plaintiff's arrest, indictment and conviction. See id at 2-3, ¶¶ 4-5; see 02-3307 Not of Cert (02-3307 Doc #3). That certification is conclusive for purposes of removal. See 28 U.S.C. § 2679 (d). Upon certification, the United States (the government) is automatically substituted as the sole federal defendant pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1346 (b)

Upon removal, the government filed a motion to dismiss. 02-3307 Doc #4. Plaintiff subsequently filed objections to the court's jurisdiction. 02-3307 Doc #8. On August 22, 2002, this action was reassigned to the undersigned. 02-3307 Doc #10. The government promptly renoticed its motion to dismiss. 02-3307 Doc #11.

On September 18, 2002, plaintiff filed an ex parte application to discover the character of the United States district court. 02-3307 Doc #14. On November 5, 2002, the court related this matter to 02-3460. On November 7, 2002, plaintiff filed a motion for summary judgment. 02-3307 Doc #17. And on December 6, 2002, plaintiff filed a motion to strike defendant's motion to dismiss. 02-3307 Doc #25.

B

In the complaint in the second-filed action (02-3460), plaintiff alleges that defendants, acting as "agents of the United States of America, Inc, * * * knowingly participated in fraud against the Plaintiff, acting in malice and deceit." See 02-3460 Compl (02-3460 Doc #1, Attach) at 2. Plaintiff seeks relief from "irreparable harm and injury" caused by defendants conduct. Id. The complaint alleges that the "United States District Court for the Northern District of California is a fiction," and so without the power "to make liens." Id. at 4. The complaint does not identify the nature of the liens allegedly made by or through the agency of the court. The complaint ultimately asserts that plaintiff's conviction was "void on [its] face" and that plaintiff is therefore entitled to damages of $106,000,000 for "securities fraud, extortion, battery, slander negligence, conflict of interest and malice." Id. at 5, 7.

Plaintiff filed the 02-3460 complaint on March 5, 2002, also in Alameda County superior court. See 02-3460 Not of Rem (02-3460 Doc #1) at 2, ¶ 1. Service was effected on Valliere on her own behalf and on behalf of Mueller, Jacobsen, Hemji and the United States. Id. at 2, ¶ 2. The record does not reflect service of the summons and complaint on any other named defendant. The served defendants timely removed the action on July 19, 2002, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1331 and 1346. As with the other action, the chief of the civil division of the United States Attorney's Office certified that defendants Mueller, Valliere, Jacobsen and Hemji were acting within the scope of their employment as federal employees in all conduct pertaining to the arrest, indictment and conviction of plaintiff. See 02-3460 Not of Rem (02-3460 Doc #1) at 2-3, ¶¶ 5-6; see 02-3460 Not of Cert (02-3460 Doc #3). That certification is conclusive for purposes of removal. See 28 U.S.C. § 2679 (d). As a result of this certification, the United States (the government) is automatically substituted as the sole federal defendant in this action pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1346 (b).

On July 26, 2002, defendant Ronald Tyler (Tyler), an assistant federal public defender who briefly represented plaintiff in the underlying criminal matter, filed a motion to dismiss. 02-3460 Doc #5. The government filed a motion to dismiss the same day. 02-3460 Doc #6. On August 7, 2002, the case was reassigned to the undersigned. 02-3460 Doc #13. And on November 5, 2002, this action was related to 02-3307. 02-3460 Doc #23. On November 18, 2002, the government renoticed its motion to dismiss. 02-3460 Doc #29. On December 20, 2002, Tyler did the same. 02-3460 Doc #31.

Plaintiff filed a motion for discovery of the character of the United States District Court on September 23, 2002. 02-3460 Doc #20. Plaintiff filed a motion for summary judgment on November 7, 2002. 02-3460 Doc #24. And plaintiff filed motions for entry of default against defendants Brandon, Pirelli and Ross on March 13, 2003. 02-3460 Docs ##35, 36, 37.

II

The court first turns to the motions pending in 02-3307. The court addresses the motions pending in ...


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