UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
October 8, 2012
RAFAEL PONCE MEDINA,
ERICK HOLDER; FRED A. SHEPPARD;
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Larry Alan Burns United States District Judge
ORDER DISMISSING CIVIL ACTION AS FRIVOLOUS § 1915A(b)(1) AND DENYING MOTION TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERISIMMIGRATION & CUSTOMS ICE, AS MOOT (ECF No. 2) PURSUANT TO 28 U.S.C.
Rafael Ponce Medina ("Plaintiff"), currently incarcerated at the Big Springs Correctional Institution located in Big Spring, Texas, and proceeding pro se, initially submitted a civil rights action in the Northern District of Texas. United States District Judge Sam R. Cummings determined transfer to the Southern District of California was appropriate. (ECF No. 5 at 1-2.) In addition, Plaintiff has filed a Motion to Proceed In Forma Pauperis ("IFP") pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a) (ECF No. 2).
I. Sua Sponte Screening Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)
As amended by The Prison Litigation Reform Act, 28 U.S.C. § 1915A obligates the Court to review complaints filed by anyone "incarcerated or detained in any facility who is accused of, sentenced for, or adjudicated delinquent for, violations of criminal law or the terms or conditions of parole, probation, pretrial release, or diversionary program," "as soon as practicable after docketing" and regardless of whether the prisoner prepays filing fees or moves to proceed IFP. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a), (c). The Court must sua sponte dismiss prisoner complaints, or any portions thereof, which are frivolous, malicious, or fail to state a claim upon which relief may be granted. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b); Rhodes v. Robinson, 621 F.3d 1002, 1004 (9th Cir. 2010).
Plaintiff's Complaint is subject to sua sponte dismissal pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1) because it is duplicative of a motion that he has filed in another action that remains pending. Plaintiff's Complaint is identical to a "Motion for Return of Property pursuant to Rule 41(g)" that remains pending in USA v. Ponce-Medina, S.D. Cal. Crim. Case No. 10cr3756 JLS. A court "'may take notice of proceedings in other courts, both within and without the federal judicial system, if those proceedings have a direct relation to matters at issue.'" Bias v. Moynihan, 508 F.3d 1212, 1225 (9th Cir. 2007) (quoting Bennett v. Medtronic, Inc., 285 F.3d 801, 803 n.2 (9th Cir. 2002)).
A prisoner's complaint is considered frivolous under 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1) if it "merely repeats pending or previously litigated claims." Cato v. United States, 70 F.3d 1103, 1105 n.2 (9th Cir. 1995) (construing former 28 U.S.C. § 1915(d)) (citations and internal quotations omitted). Thus, because Plaintiff has already filed a motion which is identical to the Complaint he has filed in this action in USA v. Ponce-Medina, S.D. Cal. Crim. Case No. 10cr3756 JLS, the Court hereby DISMISSES S.D. Cal. Civil Case No. 12cv2096 LAB (PCL) pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1). See Cato, 70 F.3d at 1105 n.2; Rhodes, 621 F.3d at 1004.
II. Conclusion and Order
Good cause appearing, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:
(1) Plaintiff's Complaint in Civil Case No. 12cv2096 LAB (PCL) is DISMISSED as frivolous pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1).
(2) Plaintiff's Motion to Proceed IFP (ECF No. 2) is DENIED as moot. The Clerk shall close the file.
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