Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

United States v. 324 Automotive Grilles

United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Savannah Division

September 12, 2019

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff,
v.
324 AUTOMOTIVE GRILLES, Defendant.

          ORDER

          WILLIAM T. MOORE, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF GEORGIA

         Before the Court is Claimants LKQ Corporation's and Keystone Automotive Industries, Inc.'s (collectively "LKQ") Motion Regarding Amendment of the Complaint and For Amendment of the Scheduling Order. (Doc. 46.][1] After careful consideration and for the reasons stated below, the Court finds that LKQ's Motion Regarding Amendment of the Complaint and For Amendment of the Scheduling Order (Doc. 4 6) should be DENIED IN PART and GRANTED IN PART.

         In LKQ's motion, filed on August 13, 2019, LKQ represents that the parties were in the process of coming to an agreement on a case management motion for this case and the related case in this district, No. 19-cv-96. (Id. at 1.) LKQ, however, states that before such motion could be finalized, counsel for the Government filed a motion for leave of absence and did not "inform LKQ of the Government's position on LKQ's proposed draft of the Parties' joint motion prior to his departure." (Id.) Accordingly, LKQ moves this Court to (1) order the Government to amend its complaint by August 23, 2019 to include all of LKQ's seized grilles that the Government intends to seek forfeiture of, (2) dismiss the related action at No. 19-cv-96, without prejudice, and instruct the Government to include any claims from the related action into the amended complaint, and (3) "set an expedited briefing schedule for a new omnibus Motion to Dismiss in response to the Government's to-be-filed Second Amended Complaint." (Id. at 2.) LKQ set forth its proposed scheduling deadlines in the motion. (See Doc. 1 at 4.)

         On August 27, 2019, the Government responded and agreed that the parties were in the process of coming to an agreement on a case management motion but provided that counsel for the Government explicitly communicated that a leave of absence would be sought. (Doc. 48 at 1.) The Government also stated that it intended to file an amended complaint no later than September 6, 2019. (Id. at 2.) The Government subsequently filed a status report on September 5, 2019. (Doc. 50.) In the status report, counsel for the Government stated that because of the mandatory evacuation ordered due to Hurricane Dorian, the Government would be unable to file its amended complaint by September 6, 2019 as expected. (Id. at 1.) However, the Government provided that it could "proclaim with certainty that the Amended Complaint will be filed no later than Wednesday, September 11, 2019." (Id.) However, the Government did not file its Second Amended Complaint on September 11, 2019.

         The Court first addresses LKQ's request that this Court order the Government to amend its complaint to include all of LKQ's seized grilles that the Government intends to seek forfeiture of. LKQ moves for the court order due to the "redundant and duplicative nature of the co-pending forfeiture actions" that have been brought by the Government in this case and No. 19-cv-96. (Doc. 46 at 2.) LKQ further moves for such order due to a recently entered order by Judge Friedrich on the United States District Court for the District of Columbia wherein Judge Friedrich ordered the Government to either "immediately release LKQ's seized automotive grilles, or, in the alternative, [] immediately initiate forfeiture proceedings against those grilles."[2] (Doc. 46, Attach. 1 at 3.)

         Thus, LKQ requests that this Court

order the Government to file a Second Amended Complaint in this case, No. 18-cv-195, to include (i) all forfeiture claims previously-asserted in the instant action, (ii) all forfeiture claims associated with the Related Action that the Government wishes to continue to pursue, and (iii) any additional, new forfeiture claims-including those recently compelled by Judge Friedrich (Dkt. No. 58, D.D.C. No. 18-cv-1562), see infra-that the Government wishes to bring against seized Repair Grilles for which LKQ has previously submitted a claim.

(Doc. 4 6 at 2.)

         This Court agrees with LKQ that, due to the two forfeiture actions pending before this Court, and in light of the agreement by the Government that it seeks to add "additional violative merchandise to the In Rem forfeiture complaint," the Government, in the interest of judicial economy and efficiency, should file an amended complaint to include all forfeiture claims of which this Court has jurisdiction and venue over that the Government wishes to pursue. (Doc. 48 at 1.) The Government shall file its goods that the Government seeks forfeiture of before this Court.[3] Additionally, the Court agrees that the claims in No. 19-cv-96 should be included in the Second Amended Complaint in this action. No. 19-cv-96 was transferred to this district from the United States District Court for the Central District of California because this action and the action originally filed in California "concern[] the same parties (the Government and LKQ), and the issues- whether LKQ's grilles infringe on Chrysler's trademarks-are substantially similar." (No. 19-cv-96, Doc. 53 at 2 .) The Court finds these rationales persuasive and further finds that the consolidation of the claims in the current action and the claims in No. 19-cv-96 would promote judicial economy and efficiency.

         Accordingly, it is hereby ordered that LKQ's Motion is GRANTED IN PART as follows:

1) The Government is DIRECTED AND ORDERED to file a Second Amended Complaint in this case within seven (7) days of the date of this Order and shall include (i) any claims previously asserted in this action that the Government intends to pursue, (ii) any claims previously asserted in No. 19-cv-96 that the Government intends to pursue, and (iii) any new forfeiture claims of which this Court has jurisdiction and venue over that the Government wishes to assert arising out of any claims for forfeiture filed by LKQ to date;[4]
2) Case No. 19-CV-96 is DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE due to this order requiring the Government to assert the claims in No. 19-CV-96 in its Second Amended Complaint in this action; and
3) In light of this Court ordering the Government to file a Second Amended Complaint, LKQ's pending motions to dismiss (No. 18-cv-195, Doc. 14; No. 19-cv-96, Doc. 22} as well as the accompanying motions for hearing (No. 18-cv-195, Doc. 43; No. 19-cv-96, Doc. 62) are DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE as moot and LKQ may file a renewed motion to dismiss responsive to the Government's second amended complaint.

         However, LKQ's motion is DENIED to the extent that it seeks an order from this Court setting an expedited briefing schedule for a new omnibus Motion to Dismiss. The Court sees no need to set an expedited briefing schedule for any motions to dismiss. Accordingly, the time to serve responsive pleadings and motions is governed by the Federal Rules of ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.