Goliath 2.0. With a filing of a writ of certiorari to the Supreme Court, the attack on the First Amendment and Freedom of the Press by billionaire Julian Robertson has gone to another level. The Writ of Certiorari is reproduced below:
IN THE Supreme Court of the United States
URI DOWBENKO, John Doe, AKA Al Martin, Conspiracy Digest LLC, National Liberty Press LLC, Petitioners.
JULIAN H. ROBERTSON, Respondent.
Petition for a Writ of Certiorari to the
Court of Appeals for the Second District
PETITION FOR A WRIT OF CERTIORARI
Post Office Box 43
Pray, MT 59065
1.â€‚Whether the courts below erred in affirming imposition of extreme sanctions as a penalty in general and special damages against the defendants, while refusing to consider their First Amendment rights as affirmed by US Supreme Court decisions Gertz v. Robert Welch, Inc., 418 U.S. 323, 349, 94 S. Ct. 2997, 3011-12, 41 L.Ed.2d 789 (1974), Curtis Publishing Co. v. Butts, 388 U.S. 130, 87 S.Ct. 1975, 18 L.Ed.2d 1094 (1967), New York Times Co. v. Sullivan, 376 U. S. 254 (1964) and Hustler Magazine, Inc. v. Falwell, 485 U.S. 46 (1988)
2.â€‚ Whether the courts below erred by not allowing the transfer of the case to the proper venue and ignoring Federal Rules of Civil Procedure in multiple instances.
3.â€‚Whether the courts below erred in summarily affirming imposition of that penalty for failure to disclose a proprietary list of subscribers to Al Martin Raw.com during discovery, while ignoring the fact that plaintiff refused to answer any interrogatories at all, dismissing them as irrelevant.
PARTIES TO THE PROCEEDING
See case caption. Petitioner Uri Dowbenko is a resident of Montana as are corporations National Liberty Press LLC, Conspiracy Digest LLC, etc. with no nexus in New York State. Respondent Julian Robertson's residence is still unknown even though he filed suit in New York.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
QUESTIONS PRESENTED i
PARTIES TO THE PROCEEDING ii
AUTHORITIES CITED iv
OPINIONS BELOW 1
STATEMENT OF THE CASE 2
REASONS FOR GRANTING THE WRIT 3
I. THE DISTRICT & APPELLATE COURT'S DECISION DEPRIVES PETITIONERS OF THEIR FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS 3
II. THE DECISION OF THE APPELLATE COURT IGNORES NON-COMPLIANCE OF OPPOSING PARTY IN DISCOVERY AND INEQUITABLY SANCTIONS PETITIONERS ONLY 8
III. THE DECISION OF THE APPELLATE COURT, IGNORING FEDERAL RULES OF CIVIL PROCEDURE ON PROPER VENUE, ALSO DEPRIVES PETITIONERS OF THEIR FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS 9
APPENDIX: APPELLATE & DISTRICT COURT ORDERS
Appendix A (Opinion) (February 23, 2012)
Appendix B (Order) (March 5, 2012)
Appendix C (Order) (May 11, 2010)
TABLE OF AUTHORITIES
All States Freight v. Modarelli,
CANJ 1952, 196 F.2d 1010
Associated Press v. Walker,
388 U. S. 130, 388 U. S. 162 (1967)
Beckley Newspapers Corp. v. Hanks,
389 U. S. 81, 389 U. S. 84-85 (1967)
Bose Corp. v. Consumers Union
Curtis Publishing Co. v. Butts,
388 U.S. 130, 87 S.Ct. 1975, 18 L.Ed.2d 1094 (1967)
Garrison v. Louisiana,
379 U. S. 64, 379 U. S. 75-76 (1964)
Gertz v. Robert Welch, Inc.,
418 U.S. 323, 349, 94 S. Ct. 2997, 3011-12, 41 L.Ed.2d 789 (1974)
Hustler Magazine, Inc. v. Falwell,
485 U.S. 46 (1988)
Mercury Ins. Co. of Florida v. Jackson,
46 So. 3d 1129 (Fla. Dist. Ct App. 1st Dist. 2010)
New York Times Co. v. Sullivan,
376 U. S. 254 (1964)
Norwood v. Kirkpatrick,
U.S.Pa1955, 75S.Ct.544, 349 349 US 29, 99 J.Ed. 789
Philadelphia Newspapers, Inc. v. Hepps,
475 U.S. 767, 772 (1986)
Robinson v. Overseas Military Sales Corp.,
21 F.3d 502, 507 (2d Cir. 1994)
Rosenbloom v. Metromedia, Inc.,
403 U. S. 29 (1971)
St. Amant v. Thompson,
390 U. S. 727, 390 U. S. 731 (1968)
Van Dusen v. Barrack,
U.S.Pa.1964, 84S.Ct, 805, 376 US 612, 11L.Ed.2d 945,
on remand 236 F. Supp.645
TABLE OF AUTHORITIES â€” Continued
CONSTITUTIONAL PROVISIONS Page
1st Amendment 3, 5, 7, 8, 9
STATUTES AND RULES
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 12 (b) (2) 2
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 12 (b) (3) 9
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 37(b)(2)(A) 9
CPLR 301, 301 2
28 USC 1406 8
28 USC 1404 2
Supreme Court of the United States
John Doe, AKA Al Martin, Conspiracy Digest LLC, National Liberty Press LLC, Petitioners.
JULIAN H. ROBERTSON, Respondent.
Petition for a Writ of Certiorari to the
Court of Appeals for the Second District
PETITION FOR A WRIT OF CERTIORARI
Petitioners request that a writ of certiorari issue to review the final order of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
The Summary Order of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit is reproduced in the Appendix(App.). The order denying Petitioners' petition for panel rehearing and for rehearing en banc is also reproduced in the Appendix.
On February 23, 2012, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit denied the petition for panel rehearing. On March 5, 2012, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed judgment of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, upholding the penalty against Petitioners. The Courtâ€™s jurisdiction is invoked pursuant to 28 U.S.C. Â§ 1257(a).
STATEMENT OF THE CASE
Petitioner Uri Dowbenko, editor and publisher of subscriber-only news-analysis site Al Martin Raw.com, as well as Conspiracy Planet.com and Montana-based corporations National Liberty Press LLC and Conspiracy Digest LLC, were sued by Julian Robertson for publishing a satirical column online by Al Martin, mocking Julian Robertsonâ€™s CNBC interview.
On July 21, 2005 or thereabouts, a call from plaintiff Julian Robertson's attorney Richard Marooney of King & Spalding made us aware that the Al Martin column of May 30, 2005, which was a satire based on plaintiff Julian Robertson's doom-and-gloom remarks in a CNBC interview, had been pirated and distributed on line, an illegal copyright infringement by a former subscriber to the site.
Despite the fact that Al Martin Raw.com is a subscriber-only website, which has a paid limited audience, Mr. Marooney asked for a retraction to be published, alleging that the column was defamatory and threatening legal action.
The allegedly offending column was timely removed and the retraction, drafted by Mr. Marooney, was immediately published online, as well as a hard copy of the published retraction was sent to Mr. Marooney, according to his demand.
Nevertheless plaintiff Julian Robertson, who has a litigious history of filing frivolous lawsuits (he sued Business Week magazine in 2000 for $1 Billion because it was a "nice round number",) filed yet another frivolous and meritless lawsuit alleging defamation. This filing was clearly a unilateral breach of contract between defendant Uri Dowbenko and plaintiffâ€™s attorney Richard Marooney.
Dowbenko and defendant Montana corporations then filed separate motions under FRCP 12(b) to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction and failure to state a claim. In support of its motion, pro se defendant Dowbenko asserted that he and the corporations were Montana-based and did not conduct, transact, advertise for business in the state of New York, nor have any real property or bank accounts in New York. Dowbenko et al also sought dismissal, under FRCP 12(b)(3), on the ground of improper venue.
Indeed Plaintiff has to date still not presented any facts sufficient to sustain an exercise of personal jurisdiction under the relevant New York law. Civil Practice Law Rules ("CPLR") Â§Â§ 301, 302.
Nevertheless the district court did not grant defendants' Rule 12(b)(2) motions to dismiss plaintiff's complaint.
After filing numerous motions for Change of Venue and Expediting Change of Venue, the district court ignored and/or refused to make a ruling. Thus, because of the district court's inaction in granting a dismissal or a transfer of the case to Montana, a waste of judicial resources has ensued from 2005 to present date. The district court should have dismissed this frivolous suit for want of personal jurisdiction and improper venue as per Robinson v. Overseas Military Sales Corp. , 21 F.3d 502, 507 (2d Cir. 1994).
On June 17, 2008, the district court ruled against defendants, ordering a default judgment as a form of extreme sanctions and referred the case to a Magistrate Judge on June 19, 2008 for a damage inquest. Following the hearing, the district court awarded plaintiff $38,129.64. Defendants filed appeal timely on July 13, 2010. This appeal is from a final order of Summary Judgment against defendant, when District Court imposed costs personally against defendant Uri Dowbenko et al.
On February 23, 2012, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit denied the petition for panel rehearing. On March 5, 2012, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed judgment of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, upholding the penalty against Petitioners.
REASONS FOR GRANTING THE WRIT
I.THE DISTRICT COURT & APPELLATE COURT'S DECISION DEPRIVES PETITIONERS OF THEIR FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS
This Court has provided a rich legacy of case precedents as a stalwart defender of First Amendment rights in landmark decisions, most notably Gertz v. Welch, 418 U.S. 323 (1974), which likewise cited "the privilege enunciated in New York Times Co. v. Sullivan, 376 U. S. 254 (1964). Under this rule, respondent would escape liability unless petitioner could prove publication of defamatory falsehood "actual malice -- that is, with knowledge that it was false or with reckless disregard of whether it was false or not." Id. at 376 U. S. 280.
Respondent Julian Robertson has not proven defamation in the instant case and thus has received a boon, in essence, a reward from the District and Appellate Court for filing a frivolous lawsuit. The opinion in Gertz further stated that "the court correctly noted that mere proof of failure to investigate, without more, cannot establish reckless disregard for the truth. Rather, the publisher must act with a "high degree of awareness of . . . probable falsity.'" St. Amant v. Thompson, 390 U. S. 727, 390 U. S. 731 (1968); accord, Beckley Newspapers Corp. v. Hanks, 389 U. S. 81, 389 U. S. 84-85 (1967); Garrison v. Louisiana, 379 U. S. 64, 379 U. S. 75-76 (1964). The evidence in this case did not reveal that respondent had cause for such an awareness. He was just upset because his friends teased him about "not taking his meds," according to the Wall Street Journal.
Since Petitioner Uri Dowbenko is the editor and publisher of Al Martinâ€™s column, he is familiar with the columnist's writing style, which is oftentimes satirical and employs hyperbole, in this case, to emphasize Robertson's hypocrisy in promoting his economic doom-and-gloom pronouncements by fawning financial media like CNBC.
The Gertz decision further notes that "three years after New York Times, a majority of the Court agreed to extend the constitutional privilege to defamatory criticism of 'public figures.' This extension was announced in Curtis Publishing Co. v. Butts and its companion, Associated Press v. Walker, 388 U. S. 130, 388 U. S. 162 (1967).
The self-promoting Julian Robertson, billionaire founder of the Tiger Management hedge fund, certainly conforms to the definition of 'public figure,' in as much as he is constantly making pronouncements on television regarding the dire straits of the global economy. That was the subject of Al Martin's column, which made fun of Robertson's perception of his own self-importance and his wild prognostications.
Furthermore "a majority of the Court agreed with Mr. Chief Justice Warren's conclusion that the New York Times test should apply to criticism of 'public figure' as well as 'public officials.' The Court extended the constitutional privilege announced in that case to protect defamatory criticism of nonpublic persons who 'are nevertheless intimately involved in the resolution of important public questions or, by reason of their fame, shape events in areas of concern to society at large.'"Id. at 388 U. S. 164 (Warren, C.J., concurring in result).
By this standard, Julian Robertson is certainly a "public figure" since he is a common fixture on CNBC's "talking heads" format.
â€œIn his opinion for the plurality in Rosenbloom v. Metromedia, Inc., 403 U. S. 29 (1971), MR. JUSTICE BRENNAN took the New York Times privilege one step further,â€ the opinion continues. â€œHe concluded that its protection should extend to defamatory falsehoods relating to private persons if the statements concerned matters of general or public interest. He abjured the suggested distinction between public officials and public figures, on the one hand, and private individuals, on the other. He focused instead on society's interest in learning about certain issues:
"â€™If a matter is a subject of public or general interest, it cannot suddenly become less so merely because a private individual is involved, or because in some sense the individual did not 'voluntarily' choose to become involved.â€ Id. at 403 U. S. 43. Thus, under the plurality opinion, a private citizen involuntarily associated with a matter of general interest has no recourse for injury to his reputation unless he can satisfy the demanding requirements of the New York Times test.â€
Therefore even if Julian Robertson is considered to be a so-called â€œprivate citizen,â€ he has not met the New York Times standard, since he is seen and heard regularly on financial news media talking about the global economy â€“ the subject of the still unproven, yet allegedly defamatory column by Al Martin.
Quite pointedly, the Gertz opinion continues â€“ â€œThe New York Times standard defines the level of constitutional protection appropriate to the context of defamation of a public person. Those who, by reason of the notoriety of their achievements or the vigor and success with which they seek the public's attention, are properly classed as public figures and those who hold governmental office may recover for injury to reputation only on clear and convincing proof that the defamatory falsehood was made with knowledge of its falsity or with reckless disregard for the truth.â€
Robertson, a globally-recognized public figure because of his world-renowned status as a â€œbillionaire,â€ alleges that Al Martinâ€™s column was defamatory -- but has never provided, or even offered to provide, â€œclear and convincing proof.â€ Absent that, the lower courtsâ€™ decisions amount to a violation of petitionersâ€™ First Amendment rights.
In another landmark case, New York Times Co. v. Sullivan, 376 U.S. 254 (1964), this Court referred to the Bill of Rights quoting â€œJames Madison who offered a series of amendments to satisfy citizens that these great liberties would remain safe and beyond the power of government to abridge. Madison proposed what later became the First Amendment in three parts, two of which are set out below, and one of which proclaimed: "The people shall not be deprived or abridged of their right to speak, to write, or to publish their sentiments; and the freedom of the press, as one of the great bulwarks of liberty, shall be inviolable." (Emphasis added.)
Freedom of the Press is, of course, the key issue in this case, since billionaire hedge fund owner Julian Robertson was so displeased with the column by Al Martin, that he sicced his legal team on a small business in Montana, with no nexus in New York, in the hope of intimidating those who would dare to write about his financial ineptitude and mismanagement.
It should be noted that in 2000, Robertson had $23 billion under management and when he shut down his firm, he had just $6 billion left. Itâ€™s still unknown if he redeemed the money to his clients, or if he just â€œlostâ€ it like Jon Corzineâ€™s MF Global debacle or Jamie Dimonâ€™s JP Morgan â€œlossâ€ of $2 billion and counting.
From the Gertz decision, the Court states that in â€œSt. Amant v. Thompson, 390 U. S. 727, 390 U. S. 731 (1968), the Court equated reckless disregard of the truth with subjective awareness of probable falsity: â€˜There must be sufficient evidence to permit the conclusion that the defendant, in fact, entertained serious doubts as to the truth of his publication.â€™ In Beckley Newspapers Corp. v. Hanks, 389 U. S. 81 (1967), the Court emphasized the distinction between the New York Times test of knowledge of falsity or reckless disregard of the truth and "actual malice" in the traditional sense of ill will.
Al Martinâ€™s column is satire, protected by the First Amendment. No â€œill willâ€ or â€œactual maliceâ€ was ever even claimed in this frivolous lawsuit. The article is simply a satirical interpretation of a CNBC interview by a rich old man Julian Robertson, who drones on and on about doom-and-gloom in the global economy. The irony is that Julian Robertson was forced to shut down his Tiger Management Group of six hedge funds in 2000, and according to the Sunday Times of London (April 2, 2000), he readily admitted, â€œWe are in a market I really donâ€™t understand,â€ thus underlining and emphasizing his incompetence as a financial manager of client funds.
Likewise in Hustler Magazine, Inc. v. Falwell, 485 U.S. 46, the Courtâ€™s opinion reflects this position in defense of the First Amendment, namely that â€œa rule that would impose strict liability on a publisher for false factual assertions would have an undoubted â€˜chillingâ€™ effect on speech relating to public figures that does have constitutional value.â€™ Freedoms of expression require â€˜breathing space.â€™â€ Philadelphia Newspapers, Inc. v. Hepps, 475 U.S. 767, 772 (1986) (quoting New York Times, supra, at 272). This breathing space is provided by a constitutional rule that allows public figures to recover for libel or defamation, only when they can prove both that the statement was false and that the statement was made with the requisite level of culpability. (Emphasis added.)
The Hustler opinion continues: â€œAt the heart of the First Amendment is the recognition of the fundamental importance of the free flow of ideas and opinions on matters of public interest and concern.
â€œThe freedom to speak one's mind is not only an aspect of individual liberty -- and thus a good unto itself -- but also is essential to the common quest for truth and the vitality of society as a whole. Bose Corp. v. Consumers Union of United States, Inc., 466 U.S. 485, 503-504 (1984). We have therefore been particularly vigilant to ensure that individual expressions of ideas remain free from governmentally imposed sanctions. The First Amendment recognizes no such thing as a "false" idea. Gertz v. Robert Welch, Inc., 418 U.S. 323, 339 (1974).â€
Petitioners were sanctioned and penalized despite the fact that there was no evidence that Al Martinâ€™s column was â€œfalse.â€ How could it be? It was satire and commentary on an old rich man publicly complaining about the worldâ€™s economy on CNBC.
â€œâ€¦There can be little doubt that political cartoonists and satirists would be subjected to damages awards without any showing that their work falsely defamed its subject. Webster's defines a caricature as "the deliberately distorted picturing or imitating of a person, literary style, etc. by exaggerating features or mannerisms for satirical effect." Webster's New Unabridged Twentieth [p54] Century Dictionary of the English Language 275 (2d ed.1979).
Al Martinâ€™s column was clearly satire and Julian Robertson was clearly upset -- and vindictive enough -- to file a frivolous lawsuit against petitioners -- just as he did when he sued Business Week Magazine for $1 billion because as he said â€œit was a nice round number.
II.THE DECISION OF THE APPELLATE COURT, IGNORING FEDERAL RULES OF CIVIL PROCEDURE ON PROPER VENUE, ALSO DEPRIVES PETITIONERS OF THEIR FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS
As we wrote in our en banc petition, the basic issue of proper venue has never been ruled upon and in essence has been ignored by the lower courts. Quoting directly from the brief --
This appeal arises out of Motions to Dismiss and Motions for Change of Venue filed by Defendant-Appellant. (SEE Brief for Appellant-Defendant Uri Dowbenko, p. 6-9). This Opinion denies Defendantsâ€™ rights according to 28 U.S.C. Â§1404:
Change of venue, (a) For the convenience of parties and witnesses, in the interest of justice, a district court may transfer any civil action to any other district or division where it might have been brought. Also this Opinion ignores another salient issue regarding venue, as per 28 U.S.C. Â§1406: Cure or waiver of defects. (a) The district court of a district in which is filed a case laying in venue in the wrong division or district shall dismiss, or if it be in the interest of justice, transfer such case to any district or division in which it could have been brought.
Since Defendants have no nexus in New York, the Court has misapprehended a significant point of law by not moving the venue to Montana, as per Mercury Ins. Co. of Florida v. Jackson, 46 So. 3d 1129 (Fla. Dist. Ct App. 1st Dist. 2010) â€“ if there is no legal basis to support a plaintiffâ€™s choice of venue, the trial court must dismiss the case or transfer it to the appropriate venue.
Also the plaintiff who brings an action in an improper venue forfeits the right to select the place of venue and, thus, the trial court properly grants the defendantâ€™s motion to change venue to a proper county. This has not been done in the instant case. As previously noted, prior law includes the common law â€œforum non conveniens,â€ a doctrine which involves dismissal of a case because the forum chosen by plaintiff is so completely inappropriate and inconvenient that it is better to stop litigation in place and let it start somewhere else. Norwood v. Kirkpatrick, U.S.Pa1955, 75S.Ct.544, 349 349 US 29, 99 J.Ed. 789; All States Freight v. Modarelli, CANJ 1952, 196 F.2d 1010
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(3) specifically permits a party to move to dismiss before joining issue on any substantive point through the filing of a responsive pleading. The purpose of this section is to prevent waste of time, energy, and money and to protect litigants, witnesses, and public against unnecessary inconvenience and expense. Van Dusen v. Barrack, U.S.Pa.1964, 84S.Ct, 805, 376 US 612, 11L.Ed.2d 945, on remand 236 F. Supp.645. Since none of these remedies were applied in the instant case, the district court abused its discretion by not addressing this issue and moving the venue to Montana. The Opinion of the appellate panel has affirmed the district courtâ€™s oversight.
This remains a clear violation of petitionerâ€™s First Amendment rights.
III.THE DECISION OF THE APPELLATE AND DISTRICT COURTS IGNORES NONCOMPLIANCE OF THE OPPOSING PARTY IN DISCOVERY AND INEQUITABLY SANCTIONS PETITIONERS -- BUT NOT RESPONDENTS - FOR THE SAME ALLEGED â€œOFFENSE.â€
The summary order by the appellate court refers to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37 (b)(2)(A) for â€œfailure to comply with discovery ordersâ€ which â€œprovides that when a party fails to comply with a discovery order, a court may impose sanctions includingâ€¦ â€˜rendering a default judgment against the disobedient partyâ€™â€-- as a rationalization for the courtâ€™s ruling.
However both the district and appellate court have continuously ignored the fact that respondent Julian Robertson has also failed to comply with the courtâ€™s discovery motions as well, by stonewalling all of petitionersâ€™ discovery requests, stating to each and every interrogatory that petitionersâ€™ questions were either â€œoverbroad, unduly burdensome, and/or not relevant to the claim or defenseâ€ or objecting that â€œthey are designed to harass Plaintiff.â€
To this present day, it is unknown what the proper venue for this case should be (the court has never ruled on this basic issue), since it is also unknown where Julian Robertson resides. In fact the courts below have ignored all motions to transfer venue and have unbelievably not even ruled on the proper venue in this case.
Julian Robertsonâ€™s attorney Richard Marooney of King & Spalding has refused to provide any information about his client during discovery as mandated by the lower courts, clearly an inequitable judicial oversight in sanctioning petitioners, but not sanctioning the respondent, for the exact same â€œnon-complianceâ€ to court orders.
Why? Because it appears the appellate court has parroted the district courtâ€™s decision that the lower courts are using the Federal Laws of Civil Procedure as a rationale for not applying the same standard for both parties.
In addition it appears that the lower courts are not conversant with current internet business protocols, since they appear to be unaware how subscribers use Al Martin Raw.com, the website which publishes Al Martinâ€™s news-analysis commentary every week, which was alleged to be the source of the allegedly defamatory column by Al Martin.
The subscriber-only Al Martin Raw website contains Al Martinâ€™s columns, which change once each week. On the homepage, website visitors can subscribe to Al Martin Raw for a fee by submitting their own e-mail addresses as well as credit card information, and they then return to the website for new columns which are accessible from the websiteâ€™s archives database.
As an aside, respondentâ€™s attorney Richard Marooney perjured himself during oral argument before the appellate court by stating that the Al Martin Raw website targeted the â€œNew York financial community,â€ a clear falsehood, since this is a paid subscriber website -- and the only way Julian Robertson found out about the column (he is not a subscriber as far as we know) was because a former subscriber pirated the column and posted it online.
The mechanism for enrolling as a subscriber is anonymous- even if we had the desire to screen each new e-mail address and credit card number, we would have no hint of the subscriber's whereabouts, since e-mail domain names are not geographically contingent, typically consisting of somewhat cryptic personal designations ending in such indeterminate addresses as aol.com, or comcast.com, or yahoo.com, etc. This is what was delivered to the respondent in answer to the courtâ€™s mandate for discovery.
The Court has mischaracterized this procedure by claiming that petitioners ignored the mandated court order by not proffering names, addresses, and other identification of subscribers. A third party not affiliated with the petitioners processes the credit card numbers. Thus petitioners were in fact in compliance with the court order by handing over subscribersâ€™ emails.
Had the Court been more â€œinternet-savvy,â€ it might have noted that publication over the Internet is unlike that done by traditional publishers, and that the publisher does not control subscriber information as might a traditional publisher.
There is little question that the penalty imposed here (â€œextreme sanctionsâ€ against petitioners -- but not against respondent) was intended as punishment by the courts below â€“ while pointedly ignoring non-compliance by the opposing party.
The Second Circuit appellate judges Ralph K. Winter, Gerard E. Lynch and Susan L. Carney dismissed the appeal by petitioners, while continuing with the enforcement action, generating a result which deprived us of any reasonable opportunity to fairly present our constitutional claims. They also pointedly ignored the venue and discovery issues as presented in the legal briefs to the district court and the appellate court.
Here, the decision from which judicial review was sought was imposed by a court which ignored multiple motions for change of the only appeal is one in which the accusation and penalty are given strong presumption of correctness.
For the foregoing reasons we respectfully plead that the Court grant writ of certiorari to review the decision of the Court of Appeals for the Second District, and that the judgment against us be dismissed or remanded to the Court of Appeals for the Second District for decision consistent with our constitutional rights.
Pro se Petitioner
Post Office Box 43
Pray, MT 59065
Dated: June 4, 2012