Lee v. Citibank

U.S. DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
Civil Practice

New York Law Journal

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Judge Richard Arcara

Lee's third pro se action against Citibank and several of its executives repeated claims made in prior actions—dismissed after consolidation—that Citibank, and its employees engaged in fraud, when deciding not to honor or redeem certain "gold notes" or "gold bonds" apparently issued in 1931 and 1935. The court dismissed Lee's lawsuit—seeking monetary damages exceeding $18 million and $160 million in punitive damages—with prejudice after finding his claims repetitious and frivolous. Other than adding Citibank as a defendant and seeking a greater amount in monetary damages, Lee's present action involved the same facts previously pleaded in his prior, dismissed, lawsuits. Further, despite attempts to re-label his claim as "bank fraud," the issue at hand in Lee's action remained one of state common law "Breach of Contract" as his prior complaints were labeled and construed. Lee did not allege subject matter jurisdiction under 28 USC §1332 or §1331. Discussing Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(e) and (h), the court also found service of process, by registered mail, to have been an improper basis of service. Neither subparagraph provides for service of either an individual or corporation by registered mail alone.

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