U.S. v. PONTE

228 F. Supp.2d 1 (2002) | Cited 0 times | D. Maine | November 4, 2002

ORDER

Judge Singal has recused himself in this case, and it has been assignedto me. Since the Magistrate Judge previously told the parties that JudgeSingal had indicated that if there was not agreement to his presidingover the case he would not only recuse, but also vacate prior orders hehad entered, I now VACATE all Judge Singal's orders. As a result, thereis no longer a Consent Judgment (Docket Item # 66), there is no longer aDefault Judgment (Docket Item # 49), and the order denying the motion todismiss filed by Iolanda Ponte, Trustee, and ostensibly by the Edward andIolanda Ponte Memorial Trust (Docket Item # 40) is VACATED.

I now DENY the same motion to dismiss (Docket Item # 40). No groundsfor dismissal were given in the motion, and a nonlawyer cannot representan entity such as a trust in federal court. Knoefler v. United Bank ofBismarck, 20 F.3d 347, 348 (8th Cir. 1994); C.E. Pope Equity Trust v.United States, 818 F.2d 696, 697-98 (9th Cir. 1987).

I also DENY the defendants' request for jury trial and for restraint oftrespass by the United States (Docket Item #46) as no adequate groundsfor such relief have been provided.

The defendants have filed notice that they have dismissed AttorneyCloutier as their lawyer (Docket Item #70). His motion to withdraw(Docket Item #69) is therefore GRANTED.

On the various motions filed on October 10, 2002, on behalf of IolandaPonte and Paula Stone, Trustees (Docket Item #70), the only request thathas not been addressed is the motion to enter their proposed consentjudgment. That motion is DENIED.

The defendants' motion for Judge Singal to recuse and vacate all hisorders (Docket Item #71) is MOOT.

The status of the case now is as follows:

1. The Edward and Iolanda Ponte Memorial Trust is in default. See entryof default of May 11, 2000 (Docket Item #13).

2. Iolanda Ponte, Trustee, and the Edward and Iolanda Ponte MemorialTrust, on the one hand, and the United States, on the other hand, enteredinto a settlement agreement that was filed with the court on May 1, 2001(Docket Item #28). The United States has moved to enforce thatsettlement agreement (Docket Item #31), or in the alternative to enterdefault judgment against Iolanda Ponte and the Edward and Iolanda PonteMemorial Trust. That motion is in order for hearing.

3. The Samsara Memorial Trust is in default on the Amended Complaint(Docket Item #38). See entry of default of April 11, 2002 (Docket Item#45).

4. Paula (Fauna) Stone, Trustee, is in default on the AmendedComplaint. See entry of default of April 11, 2002.

5. Iolanda Ponte, Trustee, is in default on the Amended Complaint. Seeentry of default of April 11, 2002.

6. The United States' Motion for Default Judgment against IolandaPonte, Trustee, the Samsara Memorial Trust, and Paula (Fauna) Stone,Trustee, is in order for hearing (Docket Item #44).

The Clerk's Office shall schedule this case for hearing on the motionsfor enforcement of settlement agreement and to enter default judgments.

The defendants are reminded once again that the Trusts, which havealready been defaulted, cannot be represented in federal court bylaypeople, but only by duly licensed lawyers admitted to practice in thiscourt.

All parties are placed on notice that this case, which is now almostthree years old, will not be allowed to languish further.

SO ORDERED.

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