Sandles v. Geht et al
OPINION AND ORDER Construing 51 Motion to Strike and 52 Motion to Amend/Correct as Motions for Reconsideration and ORDER Denying 51 Motion for Reconsideration, 52 Motion for Reconsideration. Signed by District Judge Sean F. Cox. (JMcC)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MICHIGAN
John Eric Sandles,
Case No. 12-cv-12821
Honorable Sean F. Cox
United States District Court Judge
Jan Geht, et al.,
OPINION AND ORDER
CONSTRUING DOCKET ENTRIES 51 & 52 AS MOTIONS FOR RECONSIDERATION
AND/OR MOTIONS TO ALTER/AMEND JUDGMENT AND DENYING DOCKET
ENTRIES 51 & 52
Plaintiff John Eric Sandles (“Sandles”) was previously enjoined by District Court Judge
Marianne O. Battani and District Court Judge Patrick J. Duggan from filing pro se civil suits without
first obtaining leave of the Court. (Docket Entry Nos. 2-2, 2-3, 2-4.) In violation of those orders,
Sandles began filing pro se civil actions in state court addressing the same claims and naming many
of the same defendants, including various judges and attorneys. One of those complaints was filed
in the Wayne County Circuit Court, and later removed to this Court on June 27, 2012.
Before the Court is Sandles’ “Motion to Strike Order Denying Motion to Remand, Because
it Was Issued in Absence of Subject Matter Jurisdiction, as a Result of Fraudulent Notice of
Removal, or this Court Can Answer Attached Summonses and Complaint for Trial by Jury in the
Michigan State Court for Issuing an Order in Absence of Jurisdiction” [Docket Entry No. 51] and
“Motion to Amend Motion to Strike Unconstitutional Judgment” [Docket Entry No. 52], which the
Court construes as motions for reconsideration and/or motions to alter/amend judgment.
For the reasons that follow, the Court DENIES Sandles’ motions for reconsideration and/or
motions to alter/amend judgment [Docket Entry Nos. 51 52].
As more fully explained in the Report and Recommendation (“the R&R”),1 Sandles was
previously enjoined by District Court Judge Battani from filing future civil actions without first
obtaining leave of the Court, after he filed more than 80 complaints in federal courts. Sandles v.
United States, Case No. 07-cv-15066, Order Adopting Magistrate Judge’s Report and
Recommendation and Dismissing Plaintiff’s Complaint with Prejudice, Docket Entry Nos. 7 8 (Jan.
28, 2008 E.D. Mich.). In response to Judge Battani’s order, Sandles filed three additional actions
in Wayne County Circuit Court and the Eastern District of Michigan between March 27, 2010, and
April 20, 2012. District Court Judge Duggan dismissed two of those cases with prejudice for
violating Judge Battani’s order and for being frivolous. Sandles v. Chastang, et al., Case No. 12-cv11721, Opinion and Order Summarily Dismissing with Prejudice Plaintiff’s Complaint, Docket
Entry No. 11 (May 31, 2012 E.D. Mich.); Sandles v. Clay, Case No. 12-12117, Opinion and Order
Summarily Dismissing Plaintiff’s Complaint, Docket Entry No. 7 (May 31, 2012 E.D. Mich.).
Sandles voluntarily dismissed the other civil action. (Docket Entry No. 41, at 3.) In his orders,
Judge Duggan also enjoined Sandles from filing suit without first obtaining leave of the Court and
held that Sandles would be subject to sanctions in the amount of $250 for each violation of Judge
The Court refers to the factual background material in Magistrate Judge Majzoub’s
Report and Recommendation [Docket Entry No. 41] for a complete statement of the facts
relevant to this matter.
Battani’s order or for each filing of an in forma pauperis frivolous lawsuit. Chasting, Case No. 12cv-11721, Docket Entry No. 11, at 6 7; Clay, Case No. 12-cv-12117, Docket Entry No. 7, at 7.
Five days after Judge Duggan issued his orders, on June 5, 2012, Sandles filed this action in
the Wayne County Circuit Court, alleging that Defendants, who include various judges and attorneys,
engaged in a RICO conspiracy. (Docket Entry No. 1; Docket Entry No. 41, at 1.) This action was
removed to the Court on June 27, 2012. (Docket Entry No. 1.)
Thereafter, the Defendants filed their Motions to Dismiss [Docket Entry Nos. 6 and 13],
asserting that this action should be dismissed because Sandles failed to obtain leave before filing his
Complaint. Sandles filed Motions for Remand [Docket Entry Nos. 7, 8], contending, among other
things, that the Court lacks jurisdiction.
This matter was referred to Magistrate Judge Mona K. Majzoub. (Docket Entry No. 9.)
Magistrate Judge Majzoub filed the R&R on November 6, 2012, in which she recommended that the
Court grant the Defendants’ Motions to Dismiss, deny Sandles’ Motions to Remand, and dismiss
this action with prejudice. (Docket Entry No. 41.) Sandles filed his objections. (Docket Entry Nos.
43, 46 47.)
On January 15, 2013, the Court filed an Opinion and Order Adopting the Report and
Recommendation and Denying the Plaintiff’s Objections, holding that Sandles’ violations of Judge
Battani’s and Judge Duggan’s orders were sufficient, in themselves, to warrant dismissal of this
action. (Docket Entry No. 49.) In order to further dissuade Sandles from violating Judge Battani’s
and Judge Duggan’s orders, and to prohibit Sandles from wasting the Court’s and the Defendants’
time and financial resources on issues that have already been litigated, the Court held as follows:
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Plaintiff shall pay $250 for violating
Judge Battani’s Order and Judge Duggan’s Orders, WITHIN 30 DAYS AFTER
ENTRY OF THIS ORDER;
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Plaintiff shall be held in contempt of
court if he fails to make timely payment of the $250 sanction, WITHIN 30 DAYS
AFTER ENTRY OF THIS ORDER;
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Plaintiff is ENJOINED from filing
subsequent actions without first seeking and obtaining leave of court;
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that, hereafter, sanctions of $500 shall be
imposed on the Plaintiff for each violation of this Order or for each filing of an in
forma pauperis frivolous lawsuit; and
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Plaintiff shall be liable for any costs
and attorney’s fees associated with any subsequent civil proceeding that the Plaintiff
files in contravention of this Order.
(Id. at 3 4.)
On January 30, 2013, Sandles filed his “Motion to Strike Order Denying Motion to Remand,
Because it Was Issued in Absence of Subject Matter Jurisdiction, as a Result of Fraudulent Notice
of Removal, or this Court Can Answer Attached Summonses and Complaint for Trial by Jury in the
Michigan State Court for Issuing an Order in Absence of Jurisdiction.” (Docket Entry No. 51.) In
his motion, Sandles contends that the Court erred when it adopted the R&R without specifically
addressing his objections, and instead holding that this action should be dismissed because it was
filed in violation of Judge Battani’s and Judge Duggan’s orders. In his motion, Sandles attached a
copy of a civil complaint that he filed pro se, after the Court issued its Opinion and Order, with the
Wayne County Circuit Court on January 30, 2013, addressing the same claims and defendants in this
action, including the addition of this Judge as a named defendant.
On February 5, 2013, Sandles filed his “Motion to Amend Motion to Strike Unconstitutional
Judgment,” which is a letter addressed to this Judge, notifying the Court of a hearing before the
Wayne County Circuit Court involving the matter addressed in his previous motion. (Docket Entry
The Court construes both of Sandles’ motions as motions for reconsideration and/or motion
to alter/amend judgment.
STANDARD OF REVIEW
Local Rule 7.1(h)(3) describes the grounds for motions for reconsideration as follows:
Grounds. Generally, and without restricting the court’s discretion, the court will not
grant motions for rehearing or reconsideration that merely present the same issues
ruled upon by the court, either expressly or by reasonable implication. The movant
must not only demonstrate a palpable defect by which the court and the parties and
other persons entitled to be heard on the motion have been misled but also show that
correcting the defect will result in a different disposition of the case.
See Eastern District of Michigan, Local Criminal Rule 7.1(h)(3).
A stricter standard than that applied to motions for reconsideration applies to motions filed
under Fed. R. Civ. P. 59(e). A.C.L.U. of Kentucky v. McCreary Cty., Kentucky, 607 F.3d 439, 450
(6th Cir. 2010). Under the Rule 59(e) standard, a court may grant a motion to alter or amend
judgment only if there was: 1) a clear error of law; 2) newly discovered evidence; 3) an intervening
change in controlling law; or 4) a need to prevent manifest injustice. Leisure Caviar, LLC v. U.S.
Fish and Wildlife Serv., 616 F.3d 612, 615 (6th Cir. 2010); see also Gencorp, Inc. v. American Int’l
Underwriters, 178 F.2d 804, 834 (6th Cir. 1999).
Although the Court considered Sandles’ objections, the Court did not specifically respond
to each objection in Docket Entry No. 49 because the Court held that Sandles’ violation of Judge
Battani’s and Judge Duggan’s orders were sufficient, in themselves, to dismiss Sandles’ Complaint.2
When the Court issued Docket Entries 49 and 50, the Court determined that the issues
were adequately presented in the parties’ briefs and that oral argument would not significantly
aid the decision making process. See Local Rule 7.1(f)(2), U.S. District Court, Eastern District
But, because Sandles’ has filed a motion for reconsideration, requesting the Court respond to his
objections, each objection is addressed below.3 The Court first addresses Sandles’ general
jurisdiction objection, which was presented in Docket Entries 43, 46 and 47. Next, the Court
addresses Sandles 12 objections, which are listed in Docket Entry 43.4
The Jurisdiction Objection Contained in Docket Entries 43, 46, and 47.
Sandles argues that the Court has no jurisdiction in this action because the R&R failed to
agree with Sandles’ arguments that were presented in Sandles’ “Motion of Clarification,” which is
a letter that Sandles sent to the Court. (Docket Entry No. 43, at 13 15.) Alternatively, Sandles
claims that removal to federal court was improper because the Defendants failed to provide a “direct
averment.” (Id.) In Docket Entries 43, 46 and 47, Sandles provides extensive argument that the
Court lacks jurisdiction over this matter.
It is unclear how Sandles’ “Motion of Clarification” changes the outcome of this matter. The
Court previously held that all other motions were moot when the Court adopted the R&R.
Furthermore, it is unclear what Sandles means by a “direct averment.” Presumably, Sandles is
contending that the Court lacks jurisdiction to address this matter. But, as Sandles is well aware, he
To the extent that Sandles’ assertions of fact and law in his objections are nonsensical,
falsities or indecipherable, the Court is unable to respond.
With regard to Docket Entries 46 and 47, the Court DENIES Sandles’ motions to
amend/correct the objections listed in Docket Entry 43 to the extent that they present new
arguments and authority not specifically addressed in Docket Entry 43. The Defendants have
already responded to Docket Entry No. 43. Sandles has not provided any argument or authority
asserting why the Court should consider his new objections in Docket Entries 46 and 47, which
were not timely filed. Furthermore, the Court notes that, in this action, Sandles filed numerous
motions to alter or amend his previous filings, which further confused the issues. Here, reading
Docket Entries 43, 46 and 47 together it is difficult, if not impossible, to understand what
Sandles is actually objecting to in the R&R. Thus, the Court will only address the objections in
Docket Entry 43. The Court will not consider any new objections in Docket Entry 46 and 47.
has been enjoined from filing future civil suits without obtaining leave of Judge Battani and Judge
Duggan. The jurisdictional grounds have been clearly described to Sandles in Judge Duggan’s
previous order,5 and the Court will abstain from further explaining these grounds to Sandles, as the
cases are factually indistinguishable, and Sandles is well aware by now of the grounds for
jurisdiction in this matter.
The 12 Objections Listed in Docket Entry No. 43.
Sandles objects that the R&R improperly characterizes the entire case. (Id. at 18 19.) The
R&R characterizes the issue as a RICO charge based on Sandles’ Complaint, citing 18 U.S.C. §§
1961 and 1962, the RICO statute. However, Sandles’ objection states that the instant case is not a
RICO charge, and that the only issue pertains to Judge Duggan’s orders, which he contends were
filed without jurisdiction. Additionally, Sandles filed a “Motion to Correct Objections to the Report
and Recommendation and Memorandum of Law on this Courts Lack of all Jurisdiction,” [Docket
Entry No. 46] and “Motion to Correct Objections to the Report and Recommendation and
Memorandum of Law on this Courts Lack of all Jurisdiction” [Docket Entry No. 47.].” These
motions appear to be an extension of Sandles’ objection regarding jurisdiction, which the Court has
Assuming the issue is not correctly characterized in the R&R, and the real issue is Judge
Duggan’s orders, Sandles is asking the Court to act as an appellate court of review and determine
whether Judge Duggan had jurisdiction when he entered his orders. This is not an appropriate
Sandles v. Chastang, et al., Case No. 12-cv-11721, Opinion and Order Summarily
Dismissing with Prejudice Plaintiff’s Complaint, Docket Entry No. 11, at 2 3 n.1 (May 31, 2012
inquiry for the Court. Likewise, Docket Entries 46 and 47 do not alter the legal analysis or
conclusion reached by the Court.
Sandles objects that the R&R failed to notify the Court of the presence of Sandles’ “Motion
of Clarification” filed on September 13, 2012. (Id. at 19.) Sandles asserts that this “Motion of
Clarification” established all relevant case law for the relief sought. (Id.) Finally, Sandles asserts
that the R&R failed to specifically cite to the “Motion of Clarification,” and this failure amounts to
a due process violation. (Id.)
Sandles’ “Motion of Clarification” was received by the Court four (4) months before the
Court adopted the findings in the R&R. (See Docket Entry No. 28.) In addition, the “Motion of
Clarification” was addressed to the Court. Therefore, the R&R did not need to notify the Court of
the existence of Sandles’ “Motion of Clarification.” The Court was well aware of Sandles’ filing.
Additionally, the Court is entirely unaware of any due process claim premised on the R&R’s failure
to specifically cite to one of Sandles’ numerous incomprehensible filings.
Objection # 3
Sandles objects that he was not given a full hearing on his Motions to Remand. (Docket
Entry No. 43, at 19 20.) Sandles also objects that the R&R recommended granting the Defendants’
Motions to Dismiss without making any “findings of fact” that the Defendants met their burden of
showing proper jurisdiction. (Id.)
Sandles is directed to Eastern District of Michigan, Local Rule 7.1(f)(2) as authority allowing
the Court to dispense with a hearing. Sandles is also directed to footnote #1 of Judge Duggan’s
Order dated May 31, 2012, [Docket Entry No. 2-2, at 3 4 n.1], which specifically addresses the
Court’s authority to enforce injunctions. Magistrate Judge Majzoub did not need to make any
findings of fact with regard to Defendants’ Motions to Dismiss because these motions were granted
based on Judge Battani’s and Judge Duggan’s previous orders.
Objection # 4
Sandles objects to the R&R relying on Judge Battani’s order because Sandles claims he was
never served with this order, and was thus, unaware of its existence. (Docket Entry No. 43, at 20.)
As the Defendants point out, in a previous case filed by this Sandles, Sandles v. Batista, Case
No. 12-cv-11773, Sandles filed a motion to dismiss a companion case. In this motion, which bears
Sandles’ signature, he stated, “[o]n or about May 21, 2012, it was brought to the Plaintiff’s attention
that there was a Court Order issued mandating that the Plaintiff could only file with leave of the
Court.” Sandles v. Batista, Case No. 12-cv-11773, Docket Entries 4, 6 (May 29, 2012 E.D. Mich.).
Sandles clearly was on notice that Judge Battani’s order required him to obtain leave of Court
before filing any action. He was the plaintiff in that action.
Sandles argues that the R&R overlooked relevant case law cited in his Motions to Remand
and his “Motion of Clarification” which, if read, would nullify the Orders enjoining Sandles from
filing civil suits. (Id. at 20.) Sandles also argues that this case law would strip these previous orders
of all effectiveness or authority because they were rendered by District Court Judges sitting with no
The R&R specifically addresses the jurisdictional grounds for removal to federal court.
Sandles’ objection is simply that Magistrate Judge Majzoub, as well as the Court, found
unpersuasive, inapplicable, or not binding, the law cited in the “Motion of Clarification.” Neither
Magistrate Judge Majzoub nor the Court is under any compulsion to list every case or law cited by
Sandles in his briefs and/or motions.
Objection # 6
Sandles objects to the reference in the R&R to the Eastern District of Wisconsin. (Id. at 20.)
Sandles claims that a habeas writ was issued in the Western District of Wisconsin. (Id.)
This alleged error is inconsequential to the R&R and this case. Assuming a habeas writ was
issued by any District Court of Wisconsin, this would have absolutely no bearing on Sandles’ claim
of improper jurisdiction with regard to Judge Duggan’s and Judge Battani’s orders.
Objection # 7
Sandles objects that the R&R did not address all five (5) of his constitutional claims present
in his motion to remand. (Id. at 20 21.)
Sandles simply disagrees with the manner in which the R&R presented its arguments. The
R&R sufficiently addressed each of Sandles’ claims.
Objection # 8
Sandles objects to Magistrate Judge Majzoub’s finding that the Defendants have properly
pleaded a federal defense. (Id. at 21 22.) Sandles argues that the Defendants did not file a “direct
averment,” and thus, removal to federal court is improper. (Id.)
Sandles, again, simply disagrees with Magistrate Judge Majzoub’s findings and
recommendations in the R&R. The Court directs Sandles to the Notice of Removal [Docket Entry
No. 1], wherein the Defendants have complied with the requirements.
Objection # 9
Sandles objects that his Motions to Remand were considered moot by the R&R. (Id. at 22.)
The R&R addressed the issue of removal by addressing Defendant’s Motions to Dismiss.
Objection # 10
Sandles objects to the recommendation for sanctions or any use of a previous order enjoining
him from filing civil suits because Sandles claims he was never served with those orders. (Id. at
Sandles again attempts to mislead the Court. As discussed under “Objection #4” Sandles was
well aware of Judge Battani’s and Judge Duggan’s orders. Sandles was the plaintiff in both of those
Objection # 11
Sandles objects to the R&R’s supposed failure to provide a complete review of his Motions
to Remand. (Id. at 23.) The R&R adequately addresses the Motions to Remand and reflects the fact
that Magistrate Judge Majzoub reviewed all briefs and motions filed by both parties.
Objection # 12
Sandles objects that the R&R did not notify the Court of Judge Duggan’s order issued on
April 1, 2008. (Id. at 23.) Sandles claims this order was a “partial grant and a partial preclusion
Magistrate Judge Majzoub is under no compulsion to notify the Court of every order issued
by another District Court Judge. The Court can easily access the record and docket in all cases filed
within this district, and the R&R does not need to provide any notification to the Court.
Accordingly, under Local Rule 7.1(h)(3), Sandles did not establish that a palpable defect by
which the court and the parties and other persons entitled to be heard on the motion have been misled
or show that correcting the defect will result in a different disposition of the case. Likewise,
pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 59(e), Sandles has not established a clear error of law,
shown that an intervening change in controlling law applies, presented any newly discovered
evidence, or shown a manifest injustice.
CONCLUSION AND ORDER
IT IS ORDERED that Docket Entries 51 and 52 are construed as motions for
reconsideration and/or motions to alter/amend judgment;
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Court DENIES Docket Entries 51 and 52. With
regard to the objections in Docket Entries 43, 46 and 47, the Court holds that Sandles filed this
action without first seeking leave from Judge Battani and Judge Duggan in violation of their
orders. For the aforementioned reasons, Sandles’ objections are DENIED.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Dated: March 12, 2013
S/ Sean F. Cox
U. S. District Court Judge
I hereby certify that on March 12, 2013, the foregoing document was served upon counsel of
record by electronic means and upon John Eric Sandles by First Class Mail at the address below:
John Eric Sandles
7266 Winthrop Street
Detroit, MI 48228
Dated: March 12, 2013
S/ J. McCoy
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?