Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Case of the Day: Provisional Nat'l Gov't of Vietnam v. Chen, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 41767 (C.D. Cal. Mar. 22, 2017)


Plaintiff, acting through its purported attorney general, sued the defendant for trespassing in Vietnam. The court granted the defendant's motion to dismiss with prejudice. 

The court first found that the signatory of the complaint does not appear to be a member of a bar, despite the representation that the "people of Vietnam" have elected "the Provisional National Government of Vietnam to be [their] private attorney." The court found that pro se plaintiffs may not pursue claims on a representative capacity, and at any rate the Provisional Government of Vietnam could not claim to own the land and water of Vietnam. Finally, the court also found that it had no personal jurisdiction over the defendant, as it is a Delaware corporation with principal place of business in New Jersey.


Obviously, this is a poorly litigated case. The court noted that the plaintiff did not even attend the oral argument for the motion to dismiss, nor did it file an opposition brief. 

It is a sad little case. The Provisional National Government of Vietnam is an organization based on Garden Grove, California, made up of anti-communist Vietnamese refugees opposing the current government in Vietnam. While its objective might be noble enough, clearly the group is a ragtag one that cannot seriously pursue a project litigation like this one.

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