United States of America v. Reading et al

Filing 91

ORDER denying 85 trustee Terry I. Major's emergency motion to stay proceedings pending interlocutory appeal. Signed by Judge Frederick J Martone on 08/28/2012.(JAMA)

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1 WO 2 3 4 5 6 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 7 FOR THE DISTRICT OF ARIZONA 8 United States of America, 9 Plaintiff, 10 vs. 11 James Leslie Reading, et al., 12 Defendants. 13 ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) No. CV 11-00698-PHX-FJM ORDER 14 The court has before it Terry I. Major's emergency motion to stay proceedings 15 pending interlocutory appeal (doc. 85), plaintiff's opposition (doc. 88), and Major's reply 16 (doc. 89). Major is the trustee of defendant Fox Group Trust. The court struck his notice of 17 appearance on behalf of the trust on July 3, 2012 (doc. 79) and denied his motion for 18 reconsideration (doc. 81). He now seeks to stay proceedings until his interlocutory appeal 19 of the court's July 3 order is resolved. 20 21 The order regarding Major's representation of the trust did not adjudicate the claims against any defendant and did not end this action. It is not a final order subject to appeal. 22 Nor does the order appealed here fall into one of the categories of appealable 23 interlocutory orders under 28 U.S.C. § 1292(a). The order does not involve "a controlling 24 question of law as to which there is substantial ground for difference of opinion and that an 25 immediate appeal from the order may materially advance the ultimate termination of the 26 litigation." 28 U.S.C. § 1292(b). 27 Major fails to address these issues and instead continues to argue that C.E. Pope 28 Equity Trust v. United States, 818 F.2d 696 (9th Cir. 1987), does not apply to the facts of this 1 case. But C.E. Pope controls here and prevents a non-attorney trustee from representing the 2 trust pro se. As the court stated when denying Major's motion to reconsider, "[r]ights 3 purportedly granted in a trust agreement cannot override federal law" (doc. 81). Natural 4 persons may always represent themselves. But artificial entities, like trusts, must always be 5 represented by counsel. When a person chooses to take advantage of separate entity status, 6 the person accepts the downside of that separate status – the person is not the entity and 7 cannot represent it. 8 IT IS ORDERED DENYING trustee Terry I. Major's emergency motion to stay 9 proceedings pending interlocutory appeal (doc. 85). 10 DATED this 28th day of August, 2012. 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 -2-

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