GREEN BEY v. USA, No. 1:2015cv01201 - Document 8 (Fed. Cl. 2015)
Court Description: (RE-DOCKETED FOR ADMINISTRATIVE PURPOSES) UNREPORTED Order granting 5 Motion to Withdraw 3 Motion for Leave to Proceed in forma pauperis; denying 5 Motion to proceed as a seaman, however, because plaintiff has failed to state a claim upon wh ich relief may be granted, etc., the fee need not be paid for the purpose of filing the complaint. The Clerk is directed to enter judgment. No costs. The Clerk is directed to enter judgment. Signed by Chief Judge Patricia E. Campbell-Smith. (dls) Copy to parties.
GREEN BEY v. USA Doc. 8 ltn tbt@niteb g,Bl $.!,|$,Ab*,,,r No. l5-1201C (Filed: November 3, 2015) NOT FOR PUBLICATION ) LEON GREEN BEY, @rsimg FILED Nov - 3 2015 U.S. COURT OF FEDEML CljIMS ) ) Plaintiff, THE TINITED STATES, Defendant. ) Pro Se Complaint; Sua SPonte ) Dismissal for Want of Jurisdiction; ) Sua Sponte Dismissal for Failure to ) State a Claim; Transfer; 28 U.S.C. $ ) 163 I ) ) ) Leon Green Bey, Hanisburg, Pa., pro se. ORDER CAMPBELL-SMITH, Chief Judge october Before the court is the complaint of pro se plaintiff Leon Green Bey filed and 14,2015. Compl., ECF No. Lr Piaintiff claims he is a "Moorish Ambassador" the United States raises various ciaims against Chief Judge Christopher C. Conner of 1' Judge District Court of the Middle District of Pennsylvania (Judge Conner)' Sgg rd' at defendant. conner presides over a pending criminal matter in which plaintiff is a named (M'D' 1-2, ECF No. l-t; United States v' Leon Green Be]' (Bey), No' 13-cr-210 pnzotl). on october ,r,2gl4,Iuaee conner dismissed plaintiff s motionsto dismiss that the the indictment and discharge his couniel, finding meritless plaintiff s claims Ge"r. Leon The complaint was captioned by plaintiff as follows: "(consul/Ambassador) ' (p-ro. se) v' Green Bey of the Living Moorish Nation of North Gate (North America) (Judge Christopher Conner)." Compl. 1, ECF No. 1. The official caption ffit., Court in of the case (appearing abou") *ar supplied by the Office of the Clerk of Federal Claims conformance *ith Rule 10(a) of the Rules of the United States Court of the parties . . . with (RCFC), which states that "[t]he title of the complaintrnust name all the United States designated as the party defendant'" RCFC 10(a)' Dockets.Justia.com district court was "without jurisdiction over his person because he is a free Moorish American National." Ex. 2 (Bey, No. l3-cr-210 (M.D. Pa. Oc.t23,2014))' Plaintiff charges Judge Conner with theft of plaintiff s "Moorish identity" and violations of various treaties and "Amendment[s] l, 4, and 8 of the U.S. Constitution." Id. at l-2. Plaintiff also raises a breach of contract claim against Judge Conner. Id. at I. Plaintiff seeks $750,000 in damages and requests that Judge conner retum plaintiff s Moorish identity "to the Moorish nation of North Gate." Id. at 2. For the following reasons, the court DISMISSES plaintiff s complaint' I. Legal Standards The Tucker Act provides for this court's jurisdiction over "any claim against the United States founded either upon the Constitution, or any Act of Congress or any regulation of an executive department, or upon any express or implied contract with the Uiited States, or for liquidated or unliquidated damages in cases not sounding in tort." 28 U.S.C. g t49t(aXli(2012) (emphasis added). A plaintiff must "identi$ a substantive right for money damages against the United States separate from the Tucker Act itself ' 1091, fo'r the court to exerciie jurisdiction over a claim. Todd v. United States' 386 F3d be 1094 (Fed. Cir. 2004). ihe substantive source of law allegedly violated must "fairly v. interpreted as mandating compensation by the Federal Govemment.' United States Navajo Nation, 556 U.S 287,290 (2009) (quoting united states v. Testan,424 U.5.392' 400 (1e76)). complaints filed by pro se plaintiffs are held to "less stringent standards than (1,972); see formal pleadings drafted by lu*y..r." Haines v. Kemer, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (stating that Vaizbuid v. United States, 384 F.3d 1278, 1285 n.8 (Fed. Cir. 2004) pr"uaing, a.uted by pro se parties "should . . . not be held to the same standard as However, the fact that a plaintiff ipi""aitigr drafted byl parties represented by counsel"). not acted pio se in tne Aiafting of his complaint may explain its ambiguities, but it does .*"ur.f, fuilures." Henke v. United States, 60 F'3d 795,799 (Fed' Cir' 1995)' of Moreover, pro ,. pluintiffr t*rtt.till meet jurisdictional requirements. Kelley v. Dep't Labor, 812 F.2d li78, 1380 (Fed. Cir. 1987) ("tAl court may not similarly take a liberal uie* or 1a1 lurisdictional requirement and set a different rule for p!Q5g litigants only."). IL Discussion lack For the reasons set forth below, plaintiff s complaint must be dismissed for subject matter jurisdiction pursuant to RCFC 12(hX3)_and for failure to state claim pursuant to 12ibx6). The court also finds that a transfer of plaintiffs case to another federal court is not aPProPriate. of A. The Court Does Not Have Jurisdiction Over Most of Plaintiff s Claims "subject-matter jurisdiction may be challenged at any time by the parties or by the court sua sponte." Folden v. United States, 379 F.3d 1344, 1354 (Fed. Cir. 2004); see also Metabolite Labs. Inc. v. Lab. Corp. of Am. Holdings, 370 F'3d 1354, 1369 (Fed. Cir' 2004) ("Subject matter jurisdiction is an inquiry that this court must raise sua sponte, even where, as here, neither party has raised this issue"'). "In deciding whether there is subject-matter jurisdiction, "the allegations stated in the complaint are taken as true and jurisdictionisdecidedonthefaceofthepleadings."'Folden,379F.3dat1354(quoting Shearinv. United States,992F.2d 1195, 1195-96 (Fed. Cir. 1993)). If the court determines that it does not have subject matter jurisdiction, it must dismiss the claim. Rules of the United States Court of Federal Claims (RCFC) l2(h)(3). This court may only hear claims properly brought against the United States. 28 U.S.C. $ lagl(aXl); see United States v. Sherwood, 312 U'S' 584, 588 (1941) (stating that the jurisdiction of the Court ofFederal claims "is confined to the rendition ofmoney judgments in suits brought for that reliefagainst the United States, and ifthe relief sought is against others than the United States[,] the suit as to them must be ignored as beyond the jurisdiction of the court" (internal citation omitted)). Accordingly, this court does not have jurisdiction to hear plaintiff s claims against Judge Conner' To the extent that plaintiff s claims can be construed as claims against the United that States, the court also lacki jurisdiction over most of these claims. Plaintiff s claim jurisdiction over defendant stole his "Moorish identity" sounds in tort, and the court lacks claims that sound in tort. 28 U.S.C. $ 1a91(aXl); see Aldridge v. United States, 67 Fed' cl. 113, 120 (2005) (,.Identity theft is . . . a tort."). with respect to plaintiff s,claim that defendant violated various treaties, "Ie]xcept as otherwise provided by Act ofCongress," the Court of Federal Claims lacks jurisdiction over any claim "against the United States growing out ofor dependent upon any treaty entered into with foreign nations." 28 L.S.C. S 15012. And with respect to plaintiff s claim that defendant violated the First, Fourth, and Eighth Amendments, this court lacks jurisdiction to consider claims under v. these Amendments because they do not mandate the payment of money. See Trafny United states, 503 F.3d 1339, 1340 (Fed. Cir. 2007) ("The court ofFederal claims does tt"*:*i.aiction over claims arising under the Eighth Amendment, as the Eighth ""t Amendment is not a money-mandating provision." (internal quotation marks omitted)); Brown v. United States, 105 F.3d 621,623 (Fed. cir. 1997) (holding that the court of Fediial Claims lacks jurisdiction over Fourth Amendment claims because they are not money-mandating); united States v. connolly,T16F.2d 882, 886-87 (Fed. cir. 1983), (.,tTlhe first amendment, standing alone, cannot be so interpreted to command the payment of money."). For the foregoing reasons, most of plaintiff s claim must be dismissed pursuant to RCFC 12(hX3) for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. B. Plaintiff s Has Failed to State a Claim Upon Which Relief Can Be Granted Rule 12(bX6) requires that the complaint must state a claim upon which relief can be granted. RCFC l2(bx6). Dismissal under Rule l2(b)(6) is "appropriate when the facts asserted by the plaintiff do not entitle him to a legal remedy." Boyle v. United States, 200 F.3d 1369, 1372 (Fed. Cir. 2000). When considering dismissing a complaint under Rule l2(bx6), the court "must accept all well-pleaded factual allegations as true and draw all reasonable inferences in [plaintiffls] favor." Id. A court "may dismiss sua sponte under Rule 12(b)(6), provided that the pleadings sufficiently evince a basis for that action." Anaheim Gardens v. United States,444F.3d 1309, l3l5 (Fed. Cir. 2006). Sua sponte dismissal under Rule 12(b)(6) is wananted "if it is clear that no relief could be gianted under any set of facts that could be proved consistent with the allegations." Id. Here, plaintiff accuses defendant of "breach of contracts" without alleging any facts to support this claim. compl. 1. Plaintiff does not allege facts supporting the existence of a contract with the United States (or Judge Conner for that matter), let alone facts supponing a breach of said contract. Because plaintiff has no basis for its breach of contract claim, the court dismisses this claim under Rule l2(bX6). C. Transfer of the Case to Another Court Is Not Appropriate The court now considers whether "it is in the interest ofjustice" to transfer plaintiff s complaint to another court of the United States under 28 U.S.C. $ 1631. See iex. peanut Farmers v. United States, 409 F.3d 1370,1374-75 (Fed. Cir. 2005) (stating tttut tft. Court ofFederal Claims should consider whether transfer is appropriate once the court has determined that it lacks jurisdiction). Section 163 I states in pertinent part: whenever a civil action is filed in a court as defined in section 610 0f this title . . . and that court finds that there is a want ofjurisdiction, the court shall, if it is in the interest ofjustice, transfer such action . . . to any other such court in which the action . . . could have been brought at the time it was filed or noticed . . . . 28 U.S.C. $ 163 1; see 28 U.S.C. $ 610 (defining courts as "courts of appeals and district courts of the United States, the United States District Court for the District of the Canal zone, the District court of Guam, the District court of the Virgin Islands, the United States Court ofFederal Claims, and the Court of International Trade"). "The phrase'ifit is in the interest ofjustice' relates to claims which are nonfrivolous and as such should be decided on the merits." Gallowav Farms. Inc. v. united States , 834 F .2d 998, 1000 (Fed. cir. 1987); see id. (stating that "[f]rivolous claims include 'spurious and specious arguments", (quoting Devices for Med.. Inc.v.Boehl ,822F.2d 1062, 1068(Fed.Cir. l9S7). *A decision to transfer rests within the sound discretion of the transferor court, and the court may decline to transfer the case '[i]fsuch transfer would nevertheless be futile given the weakness of plaintiff s case on th€ merits."' Spencer v. united States, 98 Fed. Cl. 349,359 (201 1) (alteration in original) (quoting Faulkner v. United States, 43 Fed. Cl. s4, 56 (1999). Because the court can discern no identifiable nonfrivolous cause of action that would potentially have merit in another court, transfer of plaintiff s complaint is not in the interest of justice. D. Plaintiff s Application to Proceed In Forma Pauperis In addition to his complaint, plaintiff filed a "Motion for Leave to File without Prepaying Fees,,'ECF No. 3, which the court interprets as an application to proceed in ,,tAls a seaman, ambassador, and, consul of the living Moorish forma pauperis (IFP). Nuti"" oritt. North Gate," plaintiff seeks leave to file his complaint without fees. Id. withdraw his IFP application, and moved,.to proceed u. u r.u-un (pursuant to 28 U.S.C. t$l 1916)." ECF No. 5 at 1.2 Section 1916 piovides: "In all courts of the United States, seamen may institute and prosecute suits and appeals in their own names and for their own benefit for wages or prepaying salvage or the enforciment of laws enacted for their health or safety without has neither fees Jr costs or fumishing security therefor." 28 U.S.C. $ l9l6' Plaintiff established that he is a seaman or that his suit is for "wages or salvage or the enforcement of laws enacted for [seamen's] health or safety." Id. Accordingly, the $ 1916 exemption from prepaying fees is inapplicable here. The court GRANTS plaintiff s motion to withdiaw his IFp application, and DENIES his motion to proceed as a seaman pursuant to 28 U.S.C. $ 1916. on November 2, 2015, plaintiff filed a motion to Nevertheless, because plaintiffhas failed to state a claim upon which reliefcan be granted and because the court otherwise lacks jurisdiction over plaintiff s claims, see instant s-upra Parts II.A-B, the fee need not be paid for the purpose of filing the complaint. IIL Conclusion For the foregoing reasons, the clerk of court is directed to DISMISS plaintiff comolaint. The clerk of court will enter judgment for defendant. No costs. 2 Plaintiff also requests that the court grant defendant an extension of time to plaintiff respond to plaintiff s motion. ECF No. 5 at l-2. Because the court resolves molion sua sponte, the court DENIES this request as MOOT' s s IT IS SO ORDERED. _f,+