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Case No. 09-

IN THE

SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

RICHARD I. FINE,

v.

Petitioner,

SHERIFF OF LOS ANGELES COUNTY,

Respondent.

On Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

PETITION FOR STAY OF EXECUTION OF SENTENCE OF “COERCIVE CONFINEMENT”

RICHARD I. FINE

In Pro Per

Prisoner ID 1824367 c/o Men’s Central Jail 441 Bauchet Street Los Angeles, CA 90012 (310) 638-2825 (messages)

ii

TABLE OF AUTHORITIES

Cases

In Re Farr,

36

Cal.App.3 rd 577, 580 (1974)

1, 4

In Re William T. Farr,

64

Cal.App.3 rd 605, 610 (1976)

1, 4

In Re Richard Isaac Fine, Esq., Ninth Circuit Case No. 09-80130

2

Richard I. Fine v. Sheriff of Los Angeles County, USDC Case CV-09-1914, 9 th Cir. Case 09-56073 (the "underlying" case)

passim

Richard I. Fine v. State Bar of California, US S.Ct. Case No. 08-1573

2

Sturgeon v. County of Los Angeles, 167 Cal.App.4 th 630 (2008)

2

Statutes California Pubic Resources Code

3

Other Authorities California Senate Bill SBX2-11

2

Constitutional Provisions California Constitution, Article VI, Sec. 19

2

U.S. Constitution - First Amendment

2

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OPINION BELOW

Orders of the Ninth Circuit dated August 12, August 26, September 15, and

September 23, 2009, denying, without giving reasons, Petitioner Richard I. Fine’s

(hereinafter “Fine”) unopposed motions to be released from incarceration pending

decision on appeal, and precluding Fine from filing a motion for reconsideration or

any further motions to be set free.

CONSTITUTIONAL AND STATUTORY PROVISIONS

California Pubic Resources Code Senate Bill SBX2-11 California Constitution, Article VI, Section 19 U.S. Constitution - First Amendment

PETITION

U.S. Supreme Court precedent exists for a stay of execution of sentence

in cases of "coercive incarceration" issued by a California superior court in a

contempt proceeding for the refusal to answer questions while the writ of habeas

corpus proceeds through the Federal Court system.

In the writ of habeas corpus

case of William T. Farr v. Superior Court, Justice William O. Douglas stayed the

execution of sentence imposed by the Los Angeles Superior Court for contempt for

refusing to answer questions after Farr had been in coercive incarceration for 45

days pending the disposition of his review in the Ninth Circuit without his having

answered the questions. (See In Re Farr, 36 Cal.App.3rd 577, 580 (1974) and In Re

William T. Farr on habeas corpus, 64 Cal.App.3d 605, 610 (1976).)

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In the instant writ of habeas corpus case, Fine was held in contempt of court and

ordered

into

"coercive

incarceration

"

on

March

4,

2009

until

he

answered

questions. Fine filed a writ of habeas corpus on March.20, 2009 in the U.S. District

Court after having filed writs of habeas corpus in the California Court of Appeal

and the California Supreme Court. Fine challenged the Los Angeles Superior Court

judge’s jurisdiction to try the underlying case and the contempt proceeding.

The trial judge, David P. Yaffe, had received illegal payments from Los

Angeles County, a party before him in the underlying case.

The payments were

held to violate Article VI, Section 19, of the California Constitution in the case of

Sturgeon v. County of Los Angeles, 167 Cal.App.4th 630 (2008), review denied

12/23/2008.

Judge Yaffe received retroactive immunity from criminal prosecution, civil

liability and disciplinary action for such illegal payments pursuant to Senate Bill

SBX2-11, enacted February 20, 2009, effective May.21, 2009.

During the proceedings in the underlying case, and after Fine left as counsel 1

opposing Los Angeles County, on January 8, 2008, Judge Yaffe ordered Fine to pay

1 Fine's reason for leaving the underlying case was that the California State Bar ordered him inactive from bringing Federal civil rights lawsuits challenging the Los Angeles County payments to Los Angeles Superior Court judges. Fine was subsequently disbarred for "moral turpitude" on March 23, 2009 for having brought such lawsuits and challenging Los Angeles Superior Court judges for having received such payments.

The U.S. Supreme Court denied Fine's petition for writ of certiorari challenging such disbarment on First Amendment grounds and due process grounds. (See Case 08-1573.) The petition was not opposed. (The Court may wish to reconsider its action sua sponte.) Five of the six California Supreme Court Justices who denied Fine's petition for review in the disbarment case had previously received illegal county payments while they were superior court judges. They received retroactive immunity for such conduct under Senate Bill SBX2-11. The sixth Justice was a member of the Judicial Council of California which drafted Senate Bill SBX2-11. These justices are Chief Justice George and Justices Chen, Corrigan, Kennard, Moreno and Baxter, respectively.

On September 2, 2009, the Ninth Circuit stayed its own disbarment action against Fine pending the outcome of the habeas appeal, noting that the two issues “overlap”. (Ninth Cir. Case No. 09-80130.)

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attorney’s fees and costs to Los Angeles County and its co-applicant for an

Environmental Impact Report without notice to Fine of the January 8, 2008

hearing, without Fine present at the hearing, and in violation of the California

Public Resources Code.

In a hearing on March 20, 2008, Judge Yaffe admitted, for the first time in

the case, to receiving payments from Los Angeles County. On March 25, 2008, Fine

filed a CCP § 170.3 Objection to Judge Yaffe. Judge Yaffe did not respond, and was

thus disqualified under CCP § 170.3(c)(4).

Judge Yaffe refused to leave the

case.

On April 15, 2008, he signed an order for attorney’s fees pursuant to the

January 8, 2008 order. Fine was subsequently ordered to answer questions about

his assets in a judicial proceeding to enforce the January 8 and April 15, 2008

orders.

Fine refused, claming the orders were void as Judge Yaffe should have

recused himself due to the Los Angeles County payments and his subsequent

disqualification.

On November 3, 2008, Judge Yaffe issued an Order to Show Cause (“OSC”) re

contempt against Fine. Fine moved to dismiss the OSC. The motion was denied.

Judge Yaffe presided at the contempt trial over Fine's objection. Judge Yaffe judged

his own actions.

Judge Yaffe was the first witness at the contempt trial. He testified that he

received payments from Los Angeles County, did not report them on his Form 700

mandatory disclosure statement, did not have any employment agreement with Los

Angeles County or any arrangement to provide services for Los Angeles County, did

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not place the payments in his campaign fund, and could not remember any case in

the last three years that he decided against Los Angeles County.

Judge Yaffe was a state-elected judge.

The Los Angeles County payments

were $46,366 per year, or 27% of his annual state salary of $178,800.

The certified question before the Ninth Circuit is "whether the trial judge

[Judge Yaffe] should have recused himself." The case was submitted to the panel on

December 10, 2009. Fine has been in "coercive incarceration" since March 4, 2009,

over nine and a half months.

The Ninth Circuit has denied two unopposed motions to set Fine free pending

its decision, and one motion for reconsideration, which was also unopposed.

Based upon the precedent of Justice Douglas’ action in the Farr case, Fine

respectfully requests that the Court grant a stay of execution of sentence.

Dated this

day of December, 2009

Respectfully submitted,

BY:

RICHARD I. FINE, In Pro Per

Richard I. Fine Inmate # 1824367 c/o Men’s Central Jail 441 Bauchet Street Los Angeles, CA 90012 (310) 638-2825 (messages)

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PROOF OF SERVICE

STATE OF CALIFORNIA, COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES

I am Fred Sottile. My address is 2601 E. Victoria Street, # 108, Rancho

Dominguez, CA 90220.

, 2009, I served the foregoing document described as PETITION

FOR STAY OF EXECUTION OF SENTENCE OF “COERCIVE CONFINEMENT” on

interested parties in this action by depositing a true copy thereof, which was enclosed in a

sealed envelope, with postage fully prepaid, in the United States Mail, addressed as

follows:

On December

Aaron Mitchell Fontana Paul B. Beach LAWRENCE BEACH ALLEN & CHOI, PC 100 West Broadway, Ste. 1200 Glendale, CA 91210-1219

Kevin M. McCormick BENTON, ORR, DUVAL & BUCKINGHAM 39 N. California Street P.O. Box 1178 Ventura, CA 93002

I certify and declare, under penalty of perjury under the laws of the United States

of America and the State of California, that the foregoing is true and correct.

Executed on this

day of December, 2009, at Rancho Dominguez, California.

FRED SOTTILE