Hisamatsu v. Niroula et al

Filing 172

ORDER ON REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION REGARDING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR DEFAULT JUDGMENT AGAINST DEFENDANT KAUSHAL NIROULA. Signed by Judge Jeffrey S. White on 11/30/09. (jjo, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 11/30/2009)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA MEGUMI HISAMATSU, Plaintiff, v. KAUSHAL NIROULA, et al. Defendants. / Now before the Court for consideration is the Report and Recommendation on Plaintiff Megumi Hisamatsu's ("Ms. Hisamatsu") Motion for Default Judgment against Defendant Kaushal Niroula, issued by Magistrate Judge Laporte on October 22, 2009. On November 2, 2009, Ms. Hisamatsu filed objections to the Report, a motion for de novo review of the Report, and a motion to expand the record. The matter is now ripe for consideration, and the Court finds the matter suitable for disposition without oral argument. See N.D. Civ. L.R. 7-1(b). For the reasons set forth herein, the Court ADOPTS IN PART the Report and Recommendation, GRANTS Ms. Hisamatsu's motion to expand the record, SUSTAINS IN PART AND OVERRULES IN PART Ms. Hisamatsu's objections to the Report, and GRANTS IN PART AND DENIES IN PART Ms. Hisamatsu's motion for de novo review. This Court outlined in detail the facts underlying this dispute in its Orders resolving motions to dismiss filed by Defendant Bank of Hawaii. (See Docket Nos. 66, 106.) Magistrate No. C 07-04371 JSW ORDER ON REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION REGARDING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR DEFAULT JUDGMENT AGAINST DEFENDANT KAUSHAL NIROULA United States District Court 11 For the Northern District of California 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Judge Laporte also detailed the facts underlying the dispute. (Docket No. 168.) As such, the Court presumes that the parties are familiar with those facts, and it shall not repeat them herein. In her Report, Magistrate Judge Laporte recommended that the Court grant Plaintiff's motion for default judgment on three of the eight causes of action asserted against Defendant Niroula. Plaintiff does not object to that portion of the Report, and the Court finds that recommendation to be thorough and well-reasoned and adopts that portion of the Report in full. Magistrate Judge Laporte concluded, however, that Plaintiff had not adequately proved up her actual, general and punitive damages. Accordingly, Magistrate Judge Laporte recommended that the Court award $1,398,000 in actual damages, which represented $508,000 in three stolen checks and $890,000 that Mr. Niroula promised to Ms. Hisamatsu as reimbursement for the funds he obtained by way of the stolen checks. Plaintiff objects to this portion of the Report. In support of her objection to the findings that she had not established damages in the amount of $41,000, Plaintiff submits a supplemental declaration and attests that she gave Mr. Niroula $41,000 based on his false representations that his sister had been kidnapped and he required the funds to pay her ransom. (See Second Amended Complaint ("SAC") 37, 50-53, 55-56; Docket No. 170, Supplemental Declaration of Megumi Hisamatsu ("Hisamatsu Supp. Decl."), 2.) The Court grants Ms. Hisamatsu's motion to expand the record, and it concludes she has established this aspect of her claim for actual damages. Accordingly, the Court rejects in part the Report, sustains in part Ms. Hisamatsu's objection, and grants in part Ms. Hisamatsu's motion for de novo review on this basis. Ms. Hisamatsu also contends that in light of Mr. Niroula's representations regarding his family's wealth, she should be awarded the $7.5 million she has requested in punitive damages. (See Docket No. 169, Objections and Motion for De Novo Review at 4:6-9.) However, the Court finds Magistrate Judge Laporte's Report with respect to general and punitive damages to be thorough and well reasoned. Therefore, the Court adopts in part the Report, overrules in part Ms. Hisamatsu's objection, and denies in part Ms. Hisamatsu's motion for de novo review on this basis. United States District Court 11 For the Northern District of California 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 2 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 For the foregoing reasons Ms. Hisamatsu's motion for default judgment against Defendant Kaushal Niroula is GRANTED IN PART. Ms. Hisamatsu shall be awarded damages in the sum of $1,439,000. A separate judgment shall issue, and the Clerk is directed to close the file. IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: November 30, 2009 JEFFREY S. WHITE UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE United States District Court 11 For the Northern District of California 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 3

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