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Richard J. Vieira v. Arnold Schwarzenegger

May 21, 2012

RICHARD J. VIEIRA,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER, ET AL.,
DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Michael J. Seng United States Magistrate Judge

FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATION FOR DISMISSAL OF PLAINTIFF'S ACTION WITHOUT PREJUDICE (ECF NO. 1) OBJECTIONS DUE WITHIN THIRTY (30) DAYS

I. INTRODUCTION

Richard J. Vieira, ("Plaintiff"), a state death row prisoner proceeding pro se, filed this action on January 9, 2012 pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. He sues governors Schwarzenegger and Brown and various state and federal officials and judges for conspiring to cause and causing lengthy delays in the state capital appeal process in violation of his federal rights. (Compl., ECF No. 1.)

Plaintiff was sentenced to death in 1992 for multiple counts of first degree murder with special circumstances. (Compl. at 2.) After a partial reversal (on one count of conspiracy to commit murder)*fn1 and re-sentencing, the U.S. Supreme Court in 2005 denied certiorari.*fn2 Plaintiff filed writs of habeas corpus both in the California Supreme Court*fn3 and this Court*fn4 , proceedings remain pending in both courts.

Plaintiff's Complaint is before the Court for screening.

II. SCREENING REQUIREMENT

The Court is required to screen complaints brought by prisoners seeking relief against a governmental entity or officer or employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a). The Court must dismiss a complaint or portion thereof if the prisoner has raised claims that are legally "frivolous, malicious," or that fail to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or that seek monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1),(2).

A complaint must contain "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief . . . ." Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). Detailed factual allegations are not required, but "[t]hreadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not suffice." Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 1949 (2009) (citing Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007)). Plaintiff must set forth "sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to 'state a claim that is plausible on its face.'" Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. at 1949 (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555). Facial plausibility demands more than the mere possibility that a defendant committed misconduct and, while factual allegations are accepted as true, legal conclusions are not. Id. at 1949--50.

III. SUMMARY OF PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT

Plaintiff's Complaint is lengthy, difficult to decipher, and replete with legal commentary and citations, but short of relevant facts.

The Complaint reflects Plaintiff's claim he is incarcerated under an illegal sentence. He complains that Defendants have racketeered and engaged in a criminal conspiracy to create "[an] illegal [state capital conviction appeal] process." (Compl. at 9, 52). He complains that habeas and collateral challenges are suspended until after direct appeal, creating years of delay in appointment of counsel and proceeding on the merits (Id. at 14, 52) ultimately prejudicing the ability to challenge the capital conviction. (Id. at 15.)

This process has required that he be represented by attorneys appointed by the state court through the state bar's nonprofit California Appellate Project, creating a conflict of interest and furthering the conspiracy against him. (Id. at 16-20.)

The foregoing, according to Plaintiff, amounts to effective suspension of habeas corpus in violation of the United States Constitution,*fn5 obstructing justice and violating his Fourteenth Amendment rights. (Id. at 33-37.)

Plaintiff seeks unspecified declaratory and injunctive relief and money damages. (Id. at 50.)

IV. ANALYSIS

A. Younger ...


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