Hoglund v. Indiana State of et al
ORDER: The Complaint is DISMISSED as frivolous pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. Signed by Judge Robert L Miller, Jr on 2/8/2018. (Copy mailed to pro se party)(lhc)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF INDIANA
SOUTH BEND DIVISION
STATE OF INDIANA, EDGAR D.
WHITCOMB, MITCH DANIELS,
MICHAEL PENCE, SUE
ZOELLER, KEVIN SMITH, CONNIE
LAWSON, GREGORY BALLARD,
LORETTA RUSH, HARRY REID, B.
PATRICK BAUER, BRIAN C.
BOSMA, P. ERIC TURNER,
THOMAS A. PYRZ, MICHAEL J.
ASTRUE, JOHN ECKART, BRUCE
LEMMON, JUDGE DAVID
HANSELMAN, SR., MICHAEL W.
LAUTZENHEISER, SR., KENTON
KIRACOFE, BETH DAVIS, YVETTE
RUNKLE, WELLS COUNTY
SHERIFF DEPARTMENT, SCOTT
HOLIDAY, GEORGE LOPEZ,
GREGORY P. KAUFFMAN, JOHN
G. CLIFTON, JOEL C. WIENEKE,
and JOHN PINNOW,
) Cause No. 3:17-CV-824-RLM-MGG
OPINION AND ORDER
Keith Hoglund, a prisoner without a lawyer, brings this suit against the
State of Indiana, the Wells County Sheriff’s Department, twenty-three state and
local officials in their individual and official capacities, and five private
attorneys. “A document filed pro se is to be liberally construed, and a pro se
complaint, however inartfully pleaded, must be held to less stringent standards
than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.” Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94
(2007) (quotation marks and citations omitted). Nevertheless, 28 U.S.C. §
1915A, the court must review the merits of a prisoner complaint and dismiss it
if the action is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief
may be granted, or seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune
from such relief.
Mr. Hoglund claims that, upon his birth in 1971, the state of Indiana
deprived him of his nationality by categorizing him as “Caucasian/White Male”
on his birth certificate. He claims that this “denationalization” resulted in the
state having control of him as a legal entity, “DEBTOR: KEITH HOGLUND©
[ENS LEGIS],” as opposed to as a “natural person.” Thus, he claims, the State
did not have jurisdiction to sentence him, a natural person, to prison. He
claims “the STATE OF INDIANA, its governors, past and present and all
corporate officers have acted in an illegal manner for the purposes of deceiving
and committing fraud upon its citizens. These government officials were
complicit in creating local ordinances, regulations, codes and statutes” meant
to control people as legal entities, but not “the Sovereign Natural Man or
Woman nor the Secured Party Creditor.” Third, Mr. Hoglund claims that
Indiana’s holding him is a violation of international contract law, as he
considers himself to be a “Swedish American National” and as such not subject
to the jurisdiction of Indiana or United States law. He asks for compensatory
damages in the amount of $160 million, paid in gold bullion.
The court of appeals has “repeatedly rejected . . . theories of individual
sovereignty, immunity from prosecution, and their ilk.” United States v.
Benabe, 654 F.3d 753, 767 (7th Cir. 2011). Even if an individual claims the
status of “a ‘sovereign citizen,’ a ‘secured-party creditor,’ or a ‘flesh-and-blood
human being,’ that person is not beyond the jurisdiction of the courts. These
theories should be rejected summarily, however they are presented.” Id.; see
also United States v. Schneider, 910 F.2d 1569, 1570 (7th Cir. 1990)
(describing defendant’s “sovereign citizen” defense as having “no conceivable
validity in American law”).
Because all three of Plaintiff’s claims rest on his theories of sovereign
citizenship, this complaint must be dismissed as frivolous. Though a plaintiff
usually is given the opportunity to file an amended complaint when a case is
dismissed sua sponte, see Luevano v. Wal-Mart, 722 F.3d 1014 (7th Cir. 2013),
that is unnecessary where amendment would be futile. Hukic v. Aurora Loan
Servs., 588 F.3d 420, 432 (7th Cir. 2009) (“[C]ourts have broad discretion to
deny leave to amend where . . . the amendment would be futile.”). Such is the
For these reasons, the Complaint is DISMISSED as frivolous pursuant to
28 U.S.C. § 1915A.
SO ORDERED on February 8, 2018
/s/ Robert L. Miller, Jr.
UNITED STATED DISTRICT COURT
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