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Jimenez v. Wells Fargo, N. A.

United States District Court, D. Maryland

April 4, 2017

ANTHONY LOLIN JIMENEZ, SR.#122076 #3B5239 Plaintiff
v.
WELLS FARGO, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION, KATHLEEN DEAN, Remediation Analyst, Defendants

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          PAUL W. GRIMM, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Self-represented Plaintiff Anthony Lolin Jimenez, Sr. is suing Defendants Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (“Wells Fargo”) and its employee Kathleen Dean. Defendants move to dismiss the Amended Complaint, ECF No. 18, pursuant to Federal Rule 12(b)(6) for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. ECF No. 19. Jimenez filed a “Response and Motion to Strike Defendants['] Motion to Dismiss Amended Complaint Pursuant to F.R.C.P. 12(a)(1)[, ] (f).” ECF No. 24. Defendants filed a Reply. ECF No. 25. A hearing is not necessary. See Loc. R. 105.6. Because Plaintiff fails to state a claim, his Amended Complaint will be dismissed.

         Background

         Jimenez is incarcerated at the Crowley County Correctional Facility (“CCCF”) in Olney Springs, Colorado.[1] On November 14, 2016, Jimenez filed a Complaint against Wells Fargo and Dean, claiming that Defendants improperly refused to give him access to various certificates from a mortgage-backed security trust in which he alleges he has an interest, in violation of the Privacy Act of 1974, 5 U.S.C. § 552a. ECF No. 1. Defendants moved to dismiss, arguing, inter alia, that § 552a “is not actionable against a non-governmental agency.” ECF No. 7. Jimenez opposed the motion, ECF No. 14, and filed his Amended Complaint. I struck Defendants' original motion to dismiss in light of their Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Amended Complaint. ECF No. 23.

         In the Amended Complaint, Jimenez abandons his Privacy Act claim and instead raises claims of tort violations as well as “other undefined ‘per se' infractions, etc.” Am. Compl. 7. He alleges that he has “determined and identified a Security CUSIP[2] related to his criminal case, D0602000CR000178.” Id. at 5, ¶ 5.b. Jimenez contends “the transaction that encumbered CUSIP 316345602 consisted of mortgage/asset back securities either publicly sold or privately traded.” Id. ¶ 5.c.

         Jimenez maintains that he requested information from Wells Fargo, the alleged custodian of the record, but Kathleen Dean denied his requests, “claiming privacy/privilege right.” Id. In support of his original Complaint, Jimenez filed two emails that Dean sent in response to his request, both asking him to provide a specific address and the borrower's name. Id; ECF No. 1-6. Jimenez responded that he wanted the “‘registration statement; and the original issued certificate, QUSIP [sic] 316345602, ” to which Dean replied that the certificates were unavailable and registration statements are private documents. Am. Compl. 5, ¶ 5.c.

         Jimenez's prolix and disjointed Amended Complaint and other filings all but defy comprehension. But, the Court recognizes its obligation to attempt (if possible) to construe the pleadings of self-represented litigants like Jimenez liberally. See, e.g., Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007). As best as I can discern, Jimenez alleges that Defendants are liable under various imagined causes of action because the District Attorney's Office in Colorado or the Fourth Judicial District of Colorado “Mortgaged” his criminal case, “giving rise to an undisclosed debt obligation, default, judgment, foreclosure, lien” that “was converted into a Mortgage Backed Security then sold in the Pooling & Servicing Agreement” to which Wells Fargo was a party. Am. Compl. 8, ¶ 5; Notice of Claim 3, ECF No. 18-4. Specifically, “Wells Fargo, National Association [sic] was the Securities Administrator/Master Servicer to the transaction reflected by the Pooling and Servicing Agreement recorded with the SEC under COMM NO. 333-115122, November 1, 2004” Am. Compl. 5, ¶ 5.g. He claims that two Form 1099-Bs[3] were filed in relation to that financial security, listing him as the “payor” and “receiver, ” but he was not aware of, nor did he authorize the security or the filings. Id. at 5-6, ¶ 5.c-h. He views these alleged financial transaction as part of “the schemes of the Defendants and their co-conspirators, ” and alleges that “Defendants and their co-conspiractors are directly or indirectly responsible, in-whole or in-part, for the Plaintiff's liberty being stolen then marketed for financial gain and other benefits, for all those involved except the Plaintiff.” Id. at 5-6, ¶ 5.g-i; 10, ¶ 13. The very notion that Defendants or their alleged co-conspirators collateralized his criminal proceedings is not only implausible; it is preposterous. Based on these nonsensical allegations, Jimenez raises claims of “deceptive trades, negligence, negligence per se, breach of duty, breach of fiduciary duty, civil conspiracy, ” and “other undefined ‘per se' infractions, etc.” Id. at 7. In his Response, Jimenez clarifies that his Amended Complaint is not “based on personal injury, ” but rather is “a contract issue [and the absence thereof] resulting in a deceptive trade practice and possible personal injury.” Pl.'s Resp. 2, ¶ 4 (emphasis and brackets in original).

         As redress, Jimenez asks this Court: (1) to order the U.S. Marshal to take custody of the alleged “mortgage file”; (2) to order Defendants to “produce the explicit contract authorizing the business relationship between [Jimenez] and WELLS FARGO, N.A. and/or their co-conspirators”; and (3) to order Defendants to reimburse him for “twice the face value of instrument CUSIP . . ., and all of the proceeds that they have received including the maximum allowed interest rate by law, ” in addition to $50 million for loss of life, liberty and property. Am. Compl. 11. In a word, Plaintiff's claims are simply humbug.

         Motion to Strike

         Jimenez moves to strike Defendants' motion pursuant to Rule 12(a) and (f), contending that it is “immaterial, . . . insufficient, ” “misleading and distractive.” Pl.'s Resp. 1. To the contrary, Defendants' motion and supporting memorandum succinctly state their arguments in support of dismissal. I will deny Jimenez's motion to strike.

         Standard of Review

         Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure authorizes dismissal of a complaint if it fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. Fed.R.Civ. P. 12(b)(6). The purpose of Rule 12(b)(6) is “‘to test the sufficiency of a complaint' and not to ‘resolve contests surrounding the facts, the merits of a claim, or the applicability of defenses.'” Presley v. City of Charlottesville, 464 F.3d 480, 483 (4th Cir. 2006) (quoting Edwards v. City of Goldsboro, 178 F.3d 231, 243 (4th Cir. 1999)); see also Goines v. Valley Cmty. Servs. Bd., 822 F.3d 159, 165-66 (4th Cir. 2016). The sufficiency of a complaint is assessed by reference to the pleading requirements of Rule 8(a)(2), which provides that 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).

         To survive a motion under Rule 12(b)(6), a complaint must contain facts sufficient to “state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007); Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 684 (2009). Under the plausibility standard, a complaint must contain “more than labels and conclusions” or a “formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555; see also Painter's Mill Grille, LLC v. Brown, 716 F.3d 342, 350 (4th Cir. 2013) (“It is now well established that mere conclusory and speculative allegations are not sufficient to withstand a motion to dismiss.”).

         In reviewing a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, a court “must accept as true all of the factual allegations contained in the complaint.” E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. v. Kolon Indus., Inc., 637 F.3d 435, 440 (4th Cir. 2011) (quoting Erickson, 551 U.S. at 94). From those allegations, it must “draw all reasonable inferences [from those facts] in favor of the plaintiff.” Id. (quoting Nemet Chevrolet, Ltd. v. Consumeraffairs.com, Inc., 591 F.3d 250, 253 (4th Cir. 2009)). While a court must accept as true all the factual allegations contained in the complaint, legal conclusions drawn from those facts are not afforded such deference. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678 (stating that “[t]hreadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not suffice” to plead a claim); see A Society Without a Name v. Virginia, 655 F.3d 342, 346 (4th. Cir. 2011).

         A pro se litigant's complaint should not be dismissed unless it appears beyond doubt that the litigant can prove no set of facts in support of his claim that would entitle him to relief. Gordon v. Leeke, 574 F.2d 1147, 1151 (4th Cir. 1978). However, liberal construction does not absolve Plaintiff from pleading plausible claims. See Holsey v. Collins, 90 F.R.D. 122, 128 (D. Md.1981) (citing Inmates v. Owens, 561 F.2d 560, 562-63 (4th Cir. 1977)).

It is neither unfair nor unreasonable to require a pleader to put his complaint in an intelligible, coherent, and manageable form, and his failure to do so may warrant dismissal. District courts are not required to be mind readers, or to conjure questions not squarely presented to them.

Harris v. Angliker, 955 F.2d 41, 1992 WL 21375, at * 1 (4th Cir. 1992) (per curiam) (internal ...


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