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Profant, et al v. Have Trunk Will Travel

October 31, 2011

PROFANT, ET AL
v.
HAVE TRUNK WILL TRAVEL



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable R. Gary Klausner, United States District Judge

CIVIL MINUTES - GENERAL

Present: The Honorable R. GARY KLAUSNER, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

Sharon L. Williams Not Reported N/A

Deputy Clerk Court Reporter / Recorder Tape No.

Attorneys Present for Plaintiffs: Attorneys Present for Defendants:

Not Present Not Present

Proceedings: (IN CHAMBERS) Order to Show Cause re: Dismissal for Lack of Subject

Matter Jurisidiction

On June 27, 2011, Gail Profant, a resident of Texas, and Leslie Hemstreet, a resident of Oregon (collectively, "Plaintiffs"), filed suit in federal court against Have Trunk Will Travel, Inc. ("HTWT") and its owners, Gary Johnson and Kari Johnson (collectively, "Defendants"). HTWT is incorporated and maintains its principal place of business in the State of California. Plaintiffs allege two state-law claims against Defendants under California Business & Professions Code §§ 17200 and 17500 for unfair business practices and false advertising.

Defendants own and train elephants for appearances in motion pictures. One of Defendants' elephants recently appeared in the film Water for Elephants.Plaintiffs allege that they purchased tickets to see the movie Water for Elephants in reliance on representations made by Defendants that they trained their elephants using humane techniques. However, after seeing the movie, Plaintiffs saw a video recording of the Defendants allegedly using cruel and inhumane treatment on the elephant seen in Water for Elephants. Plaintiffs bring this suit as a result of viewing the movie under the false impression that Defendants' elephant had been trained in a humane manner.

Plaintiffs seek (1) restitution; (2) compensatory damages; (3) disgorgement of all profits derived by Defendants from their unlawful acts; (4) injunctive relief; (5) declaratory relief: (6) reasonable attorney's fees; (7) costs; (8) and prejudgment interest. Defendants filed a Motion to Dismiss Plaintiffs' Complaint. In their Opposition, Plaintiffs state that they do not oppose dismissal of their claims for compensatory damages and disgorgement because they are not recoverable in this case. (Pls.' Opp. 17-18 n.10.)

Plaintiffs base federal subject matter jurisdiction in this Court on diversity. Although Defendants have not raised the issue in their Motion, the Court has a duty to establish subject matter jurisdiction over all of Plaintiffs' claims. See United Investors Life Ins. Co. v. Waddell & Reed, Inc., 360 F.3d 960, 966 (9th Cir. 2004).

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT CENTRAL DISTRICT ...


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