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Thursday, January 23, 2020

11th Court Appeals court affirms dismissal of lawsuit it 'experienced some difficulty' in understanding


By Karen Kidd | Jan 22, 2019


EASTLAND – A state appeals court recently upheld dismissal of a California native's vague lawsuit in a Taylor County court against an assembly service company.

In its seven-page opinion filed Jan. 17, an 11th Court of Appeals three-judge panel affirmed Taylor County 350th District Court's earlier decision to dismiss the pro se litigant Michael Allen Wells' case in favor of Assemblers Inc.

"We have liberally and thoroughly examined [Wells]' pleading and find that the allegations in that pleading have no basis in law because, even if taken as true, along with any inferences to be reasonably drawn from the allegations, they do not show that [Wells] is entitled to relief," the opinion said. "Because we have found that [Wells]' pleadings are devoid of any basis in law, we need not decide whether [Wells]' pleadings have any basis in fact."

Assemblers is a Chattanooga, Tennessee-based assembly service provider that also has locations in San Antonio and Midlothian.

The Appeals Court panel was made up of Chief Justice John M. Bailey, Justice Keith Stretcher and retired Senior Chief Justice Jim R. Wright, who sat in on the case by assignment. Justice Mike Willson did not participate.

In its opinion, the Appeals Court panel said they "experienced some difficulty in our quest to understand" Wells' pleading in his case against Assemblers. Wells' pleadings included words and phrases such as "breach of trust," "defamation," "slander," "fraud," "terrorism" and "tax evasion."

"As best as we can tell from the petition that [Wells] filed in the trial court, he complains that [Assemblers] committed breach of trust, defamation, slander, tax evasion, terrorism, and fraud against the state of Texas and the state of Tennessee," the Appeals Court opinion said. "But, even under the most liberal construction of [Wells]' petition, he does no more than name those claims. Appellant has failed to plead even 'threadbare' recitals of the elements of any of those causes of action, much less any facts, conclusory or otherwise, to support them."

In his petition, Wells claimed that in April 2013, "a trust was expressed" between himself and Assemblers. Supporting documentation Wells provided with his petition included a California birth certificate and "a page that contains only the notation, 'Ambassador Penitentiary Grantor/Settlor/Beneficiary Michael-allen: Wells of the Body of Messiah," the opinion said.

"None of the items in Exhibit A constitute pleadings of the elements necessary to establish a trust, nor do they constitute facts relative to the breach of any trust," the opinion states.

Wells' brief also contains quotations from the Declaration of Independence, the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy and chancery court opinions, with some references quoted in French.

Wells' requests of the Appeals Court included directing the district court to "correct his breach of trust" and to require a fine be paid in "50,000.00 one-ounce Republic of Texas silver 99 percent medallions," according to the opinion.

"There are many other similar statements and requests, but we see no need to detail more of them," the opinion said.

The Appeals Court panel ruled that the trial court was not allowed to consider evidence when it ruled on Assembler's motion to dismiss and overruled Wells' argument that the trial court had been wrong to not allow "critical evidence" be put into the record.

The Appeals Court panel also found the trial court was not wrong to grant Assembler's motion to dismiss.

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