The opinion of the court was delivered by: Richard Mills, District Judge:
Poole — an incarcerated criminal defendant — filed a patently
Such conduct cannot be tolerated.
Summary judgment is granted in favor of the United States.
In 1991, Jimmie Dale Poole was convicted of possession of a
firearm by a felon, 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1) and § 924(e). A few
years after the conviction, Defendant Poole filed with the
Sangamon County Recorder a "notification of commercial lien"
against several individuals involved in the 1991 conviction —
namely; United States District Judge Harold A. Baker, United
States Attorney J. William Roberts,*fn1 Assistant United States
Attorney Lawrence Beaumont, United States Probation Officer Susan
Silver, and Defense Counsel F. James Roytek. The lien is in the
amount of $5,000,000 per individual. The
basis of the lien is a claim that the five individuals breached a
"contract" when they participated in the 1991 conviction.
Thereafter, Poole filed a complaint in Sangamon County,
Illinois, alleging that the five individuals failed to respond to
his lien. Poole sought $5,000,000 and release from prison. The
five individuals removed the case to this Court. We dismissed the
case for lack of jurisdiction. Poole v. Baker, 874 F. Supp. 222
(C.D.Ill. 1994). Additionally, we refused to transfer the case —
concluding that the lien was completely frivolous. Id. at 224.
A few months later, the United States initiated a civil action
under 18 U.S.C. § 1345 against Poole seeking a permanent
injunction to enjoin a mail fraud — the frivolous lien. United
States v. Poole, No. 94-3167 (C.D.Ill. March 8, 1995). The Court
concluded, however, that the mail fraud was not ongoing, thus, an
action under § 1345 was not proper. The United States' motion for
summary judgment was therefore denied and the case was dismissed.
Now, the United States and AUSA Beaumont seek a judgment —
pursuant to the Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201 and §
2202 — declaring that the lien is invalid and an order directing
Poole to release the lien.
II. Summary Judgment — Legal Standard
Under Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c), summary judgment shall be granted if
the record shows that "there is no genuine issue as to any
material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment
as a matter of law." Black v. Henry Pratt Co., 778 F.2d 1278,
1281 (7th Cir. 1985). The moving party has the burden of
providing proper documentary evidence to show the absence of a
genuine issue of material fact. Celotex Corp. v. Catrett,
477 U.S. 317, 106 S.Ct. 2548, 91 L.Ed.2d 265 (1986). A genuine issue
of material fact exists when "there is sufficient evidence
favoring the nonmoving party for a jury to return a verdict for
that party." Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242,
249, 106 S.Ct. 2505, 2511, 91 L.Ed.2d 202 (1986). Unquestionably,
in determining whether a genuine issue of material fact exists,
the evidence is to be taken in the light most favorable to the
nonmoving party. Adickes v. S.H. Kress & Co., 398 U.S. 144, 90
S.Ct. 1598, 26 L.Ed.2d 142 (1970). Once the moving party has met
its burden, the opposing party must come forward with specific
evidence, not mere allegations or denials of the pleadings, which
demonstrates that there is a genuine issue for trial. Howland v.
Kilquist, 833 F.2d 639 (7th Cir. 1987).
Our analysis begins with a brief discussion regarding subject
matter jurisdiction. The Court has jurisdiction over this matter
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1345 — which provides that "the district
courts shall have original jurisdiction of all civil actions,
suits or proceedings commenced by the United States, or by any
agency or officer thereof expressly authorized to sue by Act of
Congress." (emphasis ours).*fn2 See United States v. Ekblad,
732 F.2d 562, 563 (7th Cir. 1984) ("Congress had vested in the
district court jurisdiction over `any case commenced by the
United States.'") (quoting, 28 U.S.C. § 1345).*fn3
The Court initially expressed some concern regarding the
appropriateness of the United States initiating this action, but
that concern has been dispelled. As noted by the Seventh Circuit,
"[t]he United States has standing to seek relief from actual or
threatened interference with the performance of its proper
governmental functions." Ekblad, 732 F.2d at 563. The Court