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Reynolds v. United States

United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania

June 14, 2018

MICHAEL CURTIS REYNOLDS, Petitioner
v.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Respondent

          MEMORANDUM

          RICHARD P. CONABOY, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         Background

         This pro se “Hazel-Atlas motion for fraud upon the court” was filed by Michael Curtis Reynolds, an inmate presently confined at the Federal Correctional Institution, Greenville, West Virginia (FCI-Greenville). This is the latest of multiple attempts by Reynolds which challenge the legality of his federal criminal conviction under Hazel-Atlas Glass Co. v. Hartford-Empire Co., 322 U.S. 238 (1944). Reynolds' submission is accompanied by an in forma pauperis application. Named as Respondent is the United States of America.

         As previously discussed by rulings in Petitioner's prior filings, Hazel-Atlas, a decision regarding a civil case, recognized that a court may set aside its own judgment when the judgment was obtained by fraudulent means. See Mumma v. High Spec, Inc., 2010 WL 4386718 (3d Cir. Nov. 5, 2010).

         Based upon a review of Reynold's latest action it is unclear as to whether it is his intention that this matter proceed as a habeas corpus petition under 28 U.S.C. s 2241, a 28 U.S.C. 2255 motion, or a civil rights complaint. It is recognized that the caption of this matter lists Reynolds as being a Petitioner. Furthermore, the caption does include the docket number of Reynolds' criminal case.

         Petitioner has also filed a motion seeking mandamus relief (Doc. 4) and a motion for judicial notice (Doc. 5). For the reasons outlined below, Reynolds will be granted leave to proceed in forma pauperis for the sole purpose of the filing of this matter, however, his action will be dismissed without prejudice.

         Petitioner was convicted of multiple terrorism related criminal offenses following a July, 2007 jury trial before the Honorable Edwin M. Kosik of this district court. See United States v. Reynolds, No. 3:05-CR-493. Reynolds was sentenced to a term of imprisonment on November 6, 2007. By decision dated March 18, 2010, the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit affirmed Petitioner's conviction.

         Petitioner thereafter sought collateral relief via a § 2255 petition which was dismissed on the merits by decision dated August 15, 2012. Thereafter, Reynolds next filed actions in the United States District Court for the Central District of California which were construed as seeking § 2255 relief and transferred to this district. Those actions were subsequently dismissed by decision dated November 28, 2012, because Petitioner failed to obtain authorization to file a second or successive § 2225 action from the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.

         A February 25, 2014 decision by the Third Circuit Court of Appeals likewise observed that Petitioner has filed unauthorized second or successive § 2255 petitions. See United States v. Reynolds, C.A. No. 13-4195, slip op. at 2 (3d Cir. Feb. 12, 2014).

         Reynolds also previously filed multiple unsuccessful § 2241 petitions with this Court challenging the legality of his federal prosecution. See Reynolds v. Bledsoe, Civil No. 4:CV-08-909 and Reynolds v. Kosik, Civil No. 4:CV-08-293; Reynolds v. Martinez, Civil No. 4:CV-08-2094.[1] He has also filed civil rights actions challenging the legality of his federal criminal prosecution. See Reynolds v. Gurganus, et al., Civil No. 4:06-CV-1753 (M.D. Pa. Sept. 11, 2006); Reynolds v. Kosik, et al., Civil No. 4:06-CV-2466 (M.D. Pa. Jan.18, 2007); Reynolds v. Judge Kosik, et al., Civil No. 4:07-CV-161 (M.D. Pa. Jan. 31, 2007).

         Reynolds' pending action again challenges the legality of his federal criminal conviction. Petitioner's motion is a lengthy narrative which asserts multiple challenges to his conviction.

         Discussion

         Civil ...


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