2019 D.C. Circuit US Court of Appeals Case Law

Barker v. Conroy  
Date: April 19, 2019
Docket Number: 17-5278

Justia Opinion Summary: This case arose when a member of the House of Representatives asked the House-appointed Chaplain, Father Patrick J. Conroy, to invite Daniel Barker—a former Christian minister turned atheist—to serve as guest chaplain an...

UPS Ground Freight, Inc. v. NLRB  
Date: April 19, 2019
Docket Number: 18-1161

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit denied UPS Ground's petition for review challenging the certification of a union at its Kutztown Pennsylvania distribution facility. The court held that UPS Ground failed to identify a defect in the Board'...

In re: Abd Al-Rahim Hussein Muhammed Al-Nashiri  
Date: April 16, 2019
Docket Numbers: 18-1279, 18-1315

Justia Opinion Summary: These petitions concern the conduct of a military judge, Colonel Vance Spath, who presided over a current Guantanamo Bay detainee, Abd Al-Rahim Hussein Muhammed Al-Nashiri, who faces capital charges before a military com...

In re: Mary E. Spears and Rosa A. Eliades
Date: April 16, 2019
Docket Number: 18-1315
United States v. Scantlebury  
Date: April 16, 2019
Docket Number: 18-3043

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2004, defendants were indicted by a grand jury in Washington, D.C. for conspiracy to traffic cocaine, but the government moved to dismiss the charges in 2013 without prejudice because of the age of the case, governmen...

Oceana, Inc. v. Ross  
Date: April 12, 2019
Docket Number: 17-5247

Justia Opinion Summary: Oceana challenged the Standardized Bycatch Reporting Methodology adopted in 2015 by the Fisheries Service, claiming that the methodology violated the Magnuson–Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and the Admin...

Doe 1 v. FEC  
Date: April 12, 2019
Docket Number: 18-5099

Justia Opinion Summary: In this redacted appeal, the DC Circuit affirmed the district court's decision refusing to enjoin the FEC from releasing information identifying a trust and its trustee in connection with a misreported federal campaign c...

National Lifeline Association v. FCC (ORDER)
Date: April 10, 2019
Docket Number: 18-1026
United States v. Gray-Burriss  
Date: April 9, 2019
Docket Number: 17-3031

Justia Opinion Summary: After the DC Circuit affirmed defendant's convictions, the court remanded his ineffective assistance of counsel claims because he had previously raised them in district court. In this case, the court affirmed the distric...

Gordon Reid v. Hugh J. Hurwitz (ORDER)
Date: April 9, 2019
Docket Number: 17-5012
McKeever v. Barr  
Date: April 5, 2019
Docket Number: 17-5149

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff, a historian, appealed the district court's order denying his petition to release grand jury records from the 1957 indictment of a former FBI agent. The court held that the district court has no authority outsi...

Agnew v. Government of the District of Columbia  
Date: April 5, 2019
Docket Number: 17-7114

Justia Opinion Summary: D.C. Code 22-1307(a), the anti-obstructing statute, is not unconstitutionally vague on its face. The DC Circuit affirmed the district court's dismissal of a complaint by three DC residents who were arrested under the sta...

Guedes v. ATF  
Date: April 1, 2019
Docket Number: 19-5042

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs challenge the ATF's rule classifying bump-stock devices as machine guns under the National Firearms Act. The ATF promulgated the rule after a mass shooting at a concert in Las Vegas in October 2017. The DC C...

United States v. Vasquez-Benitez  
Date: March 26, 2019
Docket Number: 18-3076

Justia Opinion Summary: The United States appealed the district court's decision that it was unnecessary to detain defendant in order to ensure his presence at a criminal trial and that releasing him pre-trial meant that ICE could not civilly d...

In re: Deposition of Matthew Lefande  
Date: March 26, 2019
Docket Number: 18-7031

Justia Opinion Summary: Matthew LeFande appealed a criminal contempt order for refusing a magistrate judge's orders to take the witness stand and be sworn for in-court questioning on the record in lieu of an ordinary, out-of-court deposition in...

United States v. Smoot  
Date: March 19, 2019
Docket Number: 18-3007

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit affirmed defendant's conviction and sentence for bank robbery and rejected defendant's claims of ineffective assistance of counsel. The court held that, even assuming that counsel was inadequately prepared...

Missouri River Energy Services v. FERC  
Date: March 15, 2019
Docket Number: 18-1166

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit denied a petition for review of FERC's decision upholding charges assessed by the Southwest Power Pool. The court held that FERC's decision was not arbitrary and capricious and rejected Missouri River's ar...

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals v. US Department of Agriculture  
Date: March 15, 2019
Docket Number: 18-5074

Justia Opinion Summary: PETA appealed the district court's dismissal of their claims under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), seeking records relating to animal welfare laws and regulations from the USDA. In regard to reposted records featu...

Lovitky v. Trump  
Date: March 15, 2019
Docket Number: 18-5105

Justia Opinion Summary: Under the Ethics in Government Act of 1978, candidates for certain offices, including the Presidency, must file financial disclosures with the Federal Election Commission, 5 U.S.C. 103(e). A presidential candidate’s fina...

Shi v. New Mighty U.S. Trust  
Date: March 15, 2019
Docket Number: 18-7066

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2010, the widow of a Taiwanese plastics magnate and billionaire filed suit against the trusts created before her husband's death, alleging that the transfer of a large portion of her husband's assets to the trusts unl...

University of Southern California v. NLRB  
Date: March 12, 2019
Docket Number: 17-1149

Justia Opinion Summary: USC petitioned for review of the Board's ruling that the full- and part-time non-tenure-track faculty of USC's Roski School of Art and Design exercised no effective control over university policies and, as non-managerial...

Lewis v. Mutond  
Date: March 12, 2019
Docket Number: 17-7118

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff, an American citizen, filed suit under the Torture Victim Protection Act of 1991 (TVPA), against two foreign officials from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) for alleged torture. The district court gra...

United States v. Kelsey  
Date: March 8, 2019
Docket Number: 16-3125

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit affirmed defendant's conviction of transporting a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, aggravated sexual abuse of a child, and first-degree child sexual abuse with aggravating circumsta...

Jane Doe 2 v. Patrick Shanahan
Date: March 8, 2019
Docket Number: 18-5257
Novato Healthcare Center v. NLRB  
Date: March 5, 2019
Docket Number: 17-1221

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit denied Novato's petition for review of the Board's decision finding that it committed an unfair labor practice by firing four union organizers two days before a union election. The court held that the Boar...

Siegel v. Administrator of the FAA  
Date: March 5, 2019
Docket Number: 18-1102

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit denied a petition for review of the FAA's decision to revoke petitioner's pilot certification for knowingly operating an aircraft with narcotics on board. After petitioner's plane crash-landed due to an en...

United States v. Ausby  
Date: March 1, 2019
Docket Number: 17-3077

Justia Opinion Summary: Appellant moved to vacate his rape and murder conviction under 28 U.S.C. 2255 and the holding in Napue v. Illinois, 360 U.S. 264 (1959), after the government conceded that the testimony of a forensic expert was false and...

Montrois v. United States  
Date: March 1, 2019
Docket Number: 17-5204

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs, a group of tax return preparers, filed a class action challenging the IRS's requirement that preparers pay a fee to obtain and renew their Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN). The DC Circuit held that t...

Barbosa v. DHS  
Date: March 1, 2019
Docket Number: 17-5206

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs, 26 individuals who resided in Texas and whose home suffered damage during major natural disasters, and a non-profit filed suit seeking Stafford Act economic relief from the Federal Emergency Management Act (F...

National Parks Conservation Assoc. v. Semonite  
Date: March 1, 2019
Docket Number: 18-5179

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit held that the Corps' grant of a permit allowing a utility company to build a series of electrical transmission towers across the historic James River was arbitrary and capricious. In this case, the Corps g...

United States v. Leyva  
Date: February 26, 2019
Docket Number: 17-3027

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit affirmed the district court's denial of defendant's motion to withdraw his guilty plea and affirmed the district court's judgment. In this case, defendant pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute cocaine...

In re: Grand Jury Investigation  
Date: February 26, 2019
Docket Number: 18-3052

Justia Opinion Summary: Andrew Miller appealed an order holding him in contempt for failing to comply with grand jury subpoenas served on him by Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller, contending that the Special Counsel's appointment was unlawful u...

United States v. AT&T, Inc.  
Date: February 26, 2019
Docket Number: 18-5214

Justia Opinion Summary: In an action filed by the government to enjoin the vertical merger between AT&T and Time Warner under Section 7 of the Clayton Act, the DC Circuit affirmed the district court's denial of the government's request for a pe...

Abdul Ali v. Donald Trump, et al (ORDER)
Date: February 22, 2019
Docket Number: 18-5297
Al-Tamimi v. Adelson  
Date: February 19, 2019
Docket Number: 17-5207

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs, Palestinians who mostly reside in the disputed West Bank territory, sued pro-Israeli American citizens and entities, including a former U.S. deputy national security advisor, claiming that the defendants enga...

USA v. James Baxter, II (ORDER)
Date: February 19, 2019
Docket Number: 18-3031
United States v. Alvaran-Velez  
Date: February 5, 2019
Docket Number: 17-3065

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this appeal was whether the Ex Post Facto Clause forbids applying a current U.S. Sentencing Commission policy statement, which offers sentence reductions only to those defendants whose original sentences are...

Reid v. Inch  
Date: February 5, 2019
Docket Number: 17-5012

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit reversed the district court's dismissal on mootness grounds plaintiff's action because the allegations in the complaint logically fell within a mootness exception for claims capable of repetition yet evadi...

National Lifeline Association v. FCC  
Date: February 1, 2019
Docket Number: 18-1026

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioners challenged the FCC's adoption of two limitations to programs that make voice and broadband services more available and affordable for low-income consumers. Petitioners argued that the limitations limited the...

Hoopa Valley Tribe v. FERC  
Date: January 25, 2019
Docket Number: 14-1271

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit granted a petition for review of FERC's orders finding that California and Oregon had not waived their water quality certification authority under Section 401 of the Clean Water Act (CWA) and that PacifiCo...

Judicial Watch, Inc. v. DOD  
Date: January 25, 2019
Docket Number: 18-5017

Justia Opinion Summary: Judicial Watch filed suit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), seeking release of five memoranda that memorialized advice to the President and his top national security advisers when the President was considering...

North Carolina v. FERC  
Date: January 18, 2019
Docket Number: 17-1243

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit denied North Carolina's petition for review of FERC's orders involving the relicensing of the Yadkin Hydroelectric Project No. 2197. North Carolina alleged that the license applicant, Alcoa, misrepresented...

Medina v. Whitaker  
Date: January 18, 2019
Docket Number: 17-5248

Justia Opinion Summary: Felons are not among the law-abiding, responsible citizens entitled to the protections of the Second Amendment. The DC Circuit affirmed the district court's dismissal of plaintiff's action seeking to enjoin the enforceme...

San Diego Gas & Electric Co v. FERC  
Date: January 15, 2019
Docket Number: 16-1433

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit denied SDG&E's petition for review of FERC's declaratory order applying FERC's cancelled or abandoned electricity transmission facilities incentive, 18 C.F.R. 35.35(d)(1)(vi) (Abandonment Incentive), only...

Estate of Earnest Lee Boyland v. United States Department of Agriculture  
Date: January 15, 2019
Docket Number: 17-5082

Justia Opinion Summary: Representatives of the estates of black male farmers sought to submit claims of past discrimination in agricultural credit programs to a claims-processing framework set up to resolve Hispanic and female farmers' credit d...

Air Transport Association v. FAA (ORDER)
Date: January 15, 2019
Docket Number: 18-1157
People for the Ethical Treatm v. AGRI
Date: January 14, 2019
Docket Number: 18-5074
Kornitzky Group, LLC v. Daniel Elwell
Date: January 9, 2019
Docket Number: 18-1160
In re: Grand Jury Subpoena  
Date: January 8, 2019
Docket Number: 18-3071

Justia Opinion Summary: Assuming the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act's immunity applies, the DC Circuit held that it leaves intact the district courts' subject-matter jurisdiction over federal criminal cases involving foreign sovereigns. The c...

United States v. Flores  
Date: January 4, 2019
Docket Number: 17-3090

Justia Opinion Summary: The DC Circuit vacated defendant's sentence after he pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to conduct the affairs of an enterprise through a pattern of racketeering activity, one count of accessory after the fact for...