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United States v. Singleton

United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division

July 17, 2014

ANTHONY SINGLETON Criminal No. 03 CR 175.


ROBERT M. DOW, Jr., District Judge.

This matter is before the Court on Petitioner Anthony Singleton's motion to vacate, set aside, or correct sentence by person in federal custody pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255 [1]. For the reasons stated below, the Court denies Petitioner Singleton's motion to vacate, set aside, or correct sentence [1].

I. Background

A. The Underlying Proceedings

On February 20, 2003, a grand jury returned a three-count indictment charging Anthony Singleton with the theft of mail matter and the possession of postal arrow keys, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1704 and 1708. During the ensuing proceedings, Judge David H. Coar appointed three different attorneys to represent Singleton. R. 10, 21, 22, 34-36, 59. Singleton, however, was unable to work with any of these appointed attorneys. Judge Coar ultimately allowed all three of these attorneys to withdraw from their representation of Singleton, so Singleton proceeded pro se at trial and sentencing. R. 10, 21, 22, 34-36, 59.

The relationship between Singleton and his third appointed counsel apparently began to disintegrate around December 2003, when Singleton began to file various documents asserting challenges to the district court's jurisdiction. R. 45-49. In January 2004, based upon Singleton's filings, Judge Coar ordered a psychological examination of Singleton in order to determine whether he was competent to stand trial. R. 51. The examination report was filed on March 18, 2004, and Judge Coar subsequently set the matter for trial. R. 59-60. The jury trial commenced on May 3, 2004 and, after a two day trial, the jury returned verdicts of guilty on all counts. R. 76, 81. Throughout the period before and after trial, Singleton continued to file various documents making untenable claims. R. 53-55, 62-63, 67-68, 70-72, 83-86, 89-90, 92-93, 96.

At sentencing, the government demonstrated that Singleton utilized stolen mail to steal the identities of hundreds of victims and that he caused verifiable losses exceeding $120, 000. Judge Coar sentenced Singleton to 115 months imprisonment and three terms of supervised release, with each term of supervised release to be served concurrently. R. 99. Singleton continued to file various documents making the same types of jurisdictional claims after Judge Coar's sentencing (see, e.g., R. 100-116), but never sought to appeal his conviction or sentence. Singleton also continued to file various documents making similar, untenable claims throughout the period of his incarceration. R. 101-10, 113-16, 118-23, 125-26, 128-31133-35, 137.

B. The Revocation Proceedings

Singleton was released from his term of imprisonment on September 2, 2011, and reported to the U.S. Probation Office. At that time, Singleton was instructed to report back to the U.S. Probation Office on September 14, 2011, in order to meet with his probation officer and review the terms of his supervised release. Singleton reported to the office on September 14, 2011, but refused to meet with his probation officer. The probation officer subsequently contacted Singleton, and Singleton told the probation officer that he was not under any obligation to meet with the officer. On or about September 29, 2011, the probation officer filed a special report with the Court noting that Singleton had violated the terms of his supervised release. The government subsequently moved to revoke Singleton's supervised release. R. 145. Singleton appeared for a hearing in November 2011, and the Court entered and continued the government's motion. The Court also appointed counsel to represent Singleton in connection with the revocation proceedings. R. 148-49.

Singleton continued his pattern of claiming, among other things, a lack of jurisdiction and the government's release of claims against him during the pendency of the revocation proceedings. For example, on December 8, 2011, Singleton filed a document entitled "Notice of Prohibition Affidavit" in which he claimed, among other things, as follows:

As such indicated above, all encumbrances held by the UNITED STATES against the trust described as "Defendant" were caused to be removed by an operation of law, and a contractual bond was established which strictly prohibits the UNITED STATES under federal law against attachments, liens, the issuance, docketing, filing, or the levy of or under any judgment, decree, execution, acquisition of any interest of any nature whatsoever by reason of a judgment or decree, for the fulfillment of any condition, or the exercise of any power of appointment, power of attorney, or other power presumed to exist, performed within the UNITED STATES for the purpose, intent, or effect of which is to create, surrender, release, transfer, or alter, directly or indirectly, any right, remedy, power, privilege, or interest with respect to any property ANTHONY SINGLETON, aka ANTHONY SINGLETON HALL has an interest * * *.

R. 153. Singleton also attached UCC Financing Statements that he apparently filed with the Illinois Secretary of State in which Singleton claimed that he had interest in the personal property of the Attorney General of the United States as well as the United States Department of Justice. R. 153.[1]

On December 30, 2011, Singleton was arrested by the New York Police Department on charges of grand larceny and possession of a forged instrument. Following his arrest in New York, this Court entered a warrant for Singleton's arrest when he failed to appear for a rule to show cause hearing. R. 155.

Singleton was convicted in New York and sentenced to time served on March 26, 2013, after being in custody for a period of approximately fifteen months. Upon the completion of his sentence, local authorities turned Singleton over to the United States Marshal's Service in New York. Singleton was removed from Southern District of New York to this district, where he appeared on May 22, 2013. R. 158, 163. In June 2013, Singleton's appointed counsel moved to withdraw from the representation based upon "irreconcilable differences." R. 165. On June 18, 2013, the Court granted counsel's motion to withdraw and ordered that Singleton would have to represent himself pro se based upon his refusal to cooperate with counsel. R. 167-68. Consistent with his prior pattern of obstruction, Singleton continued to challenge the jurisdiction of the Court and was generally not responsive to inquiries from the Court. On July 18, 2013, the Court found Singleton in violation ...

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