United States District Court, N.D. Georgia, Atlanta Division
HABEAS CORPUS 28 U.S.C. § 2254
FINAL REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
K. LARKINS III UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE KUDGE.
Mohammad Sadat-Moussavi, confined in Wilcox State Prison in
Abbeville, Georgia, submitted a habeas corpus petition under
28 U.S.C. § 2254 in order to challenge his convictions
in the Fulton County Superior Court. [Doc. 1 at 1.] After the
Federal District Court denied the Government's motion to
dismiss [Doc. 20], the parties filed additional briefs and
exhibits regarding the merits of the petition [Docs. 21, 22,
23, 24, 25, 26, 28]. For the reasons given below, the
undersigned recommends that the petition be denied and this
action be dismissed.
August 21, 2009, a jury convicted Petitioner of aggravated
assault, pointing a firearm at another, false imprisonment,
terroristic threats, aggravated battery, and possession of a
firearm during the commission of a felony. See
Sadat-Moussavi v. State, 313 Ga.App. 433, 433 (2011).
[See also Doc. 1 at 1; Doc. 14-2 at 1.] Petitioner
was sentenced to twenty-five years of imprisonment, suspended
after ten years, followed by fifteen years of probation.
[Doc. 1 at 1; Doc. 21 at 1.]
direct appeal, Petitioner claimed that “the trial court
abused its discretion in failing to strike a prospective
juror for cause.” Sadat-Moussavi, 313 Ga.App.
at 433. [Doc. 14-2 at 1.] The Georgia Court of Appeals
rejected that claim and affirmed Petitioner's convictions
on December 27, 2011. Petitioner did not seek certiorari in
the Georgia Supreme Court. [Doc. 1 at 2.]
state habeas proceeding, which commenced on October 1, 2012,
Petitioner presented the following grounds for relief:
1. The police, prosecution, and trial counsel
“forged” evidence against Petitioner, in
violation of his Fourteenth Amendment rights.
2. Trial counsel provided ineffective assistance because he
“disregarded witnesses, left cross-examinations
inconclusive (did not highlight witnesses'
contradictions), raised no objections where they had merit,
and turned all allegations into evidence through tacit
agreement or silence.”
3. Appellate counsel provided ineffective assistance because
he “disregarded witnesses, [the] disloyalty of trial
counsel, and false prosecution witnesses . . . .”
4. Appellate counsel violated Petitioner's Fourteenth
Amendment rights by conspiring with a judge to conceal
“the misconduct of all those involved in the trial
5. “Trial counsel could not raise ineffective
assistance of counsel against himself on appeal.”
6. “Petitioner was denied the right to represent
himself on his Motion for New Trial.”
[Doc. 14-3 at 4-5; Doc. 14-4 at 2-5; Doc. 26-2 at 2-4.] The
state habeas court denied relief in a final order filed on
April 3, 2015. [Doc. 14-4.] The Georgia Supreme Court denied
Petitioner's application for a certificate of probable
cause to appeal on September 8, 2015. [Doc. 14-5.]
timely executed his § 2254 petition on January 4, 2016.
[Doc. 1 at 7; Doc. 18 at 3-5; Doc. 20 at 1-2.] Petitioner
raises the same grounds for relief found in his state habeas
petition. [Doc. 1 at 5-6, 8.] Petitioner also adds the
following grounds, which the undersigned labels as grounds
seven and eight:
7. The state habeas court violated Petitioner's
Fourteenth Amendment rights.
8. The Georgia Supreme Court's rulings in
Petitioner's habeas case violated his First and
Fourteenth Amendment rights.
[Id. at 8-9.]
undersigned considers Petitioner's grounds in the
following order: (1) grounds one, three, four, five and six,
which were adjudicated on the merits in the state habeas
proceeding; (2) ground two, which is procedurally defaulted;