United States District Court, District of Columbia
matter, transferred from the United States District Court for
the Northern District of Texas [Dkt. # 7], is before the
Court on its initial review of plaintiff spro se
complaint [Dkt. # 1] and application to proceed in forma
pauperis ("IFP") [Dkt. # 3]. The IFP statute
requires dismissal of a case "at any time" the
Court determines, as it will here, that the complaint fails
to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, is
frivolous, or seeks monetary relief against an immune
defendant. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).
has sued three judges of the United States Court of Appeals
for the Federal Circuit. He has attached to the complaint a
per curiam decision of the Federal Circuit, affirming the
Court of Federal Claims' dismissal of plaintiff s
complaint for want of subject matter jurisdiction. Those
decisions form the basis of this civil action. Plaintiff
alleges, inter alia, that defendants had "no
constitutional purpose in dismissing my lawsuit, knowing that
the criminal conspiracy 'merit' that is contained
within the lawsuit is a 'new' and 'undefined'
criminal conspiracy and constitutionally defined form of
slavery[.]" Compl. at 4. He seeks $3 million in damages,
id. at 8, and equitable relief that includes a
declaration that "the federal tort claims act of 1946 is
unconstitutional, " and an injunction "providing an
inability for judges to dismiss cases through their official
duties[.]" Compl. at 3-4.
enjoy absolute judicial immunity from suits for money damages
for all actions taken in [their] judicial capacity, unless
[the] actions are taken in the complete absence of all
jurisdiction." Sindram v. Suda, 986 F.2d 1459,
1460 (D.C. Cir. 1993) (per curiam) (citation omitted). Such
"immunity is an immunity from suit, not just from
ultimate assessment of damages." Mireles v.
Waco, 502 U.S. 9, 11 (1991). It is without question that
the challenged actions fall squarely within defendants'
judicial functions and jurisdiction. As a result, defendants
enjoy absolute immunity from the damages claim.
may be dismissed as frivolous when it lacks "an arguable
basis either in law or in fact." Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). Plaintiffs claim for
injunctive relief, see supra, satisfies this
standard. District courts generally lack authority to review
the decisions of other courts, "cannot exercise
appellate mandamus over other courts, " United
States v. Choi, 818 F.Supp.2d 79, 85 (D.D.C. 2011), and
certainly cannot "order the judges or officers of a
higher court to take an action" or refrain from taking
an action, Panko v. Kodak, 606 F.2d 168, 171 n.6
(7th Cir. 1979), cert, denied, 444 U.S. 1081 (1980).
Furthermore, "by filing a complaint in this Court
against federal judges who have done nothing more than their
duty .: ., [plaintiff] has instituted a meritless [and
frivolous] action." Fleming v. United States,
847 F.Supp. 170, 172 (D.D.C. 1994), cert, denied 513
Failure to State a Claim for Declaratory Relief
Court is authorized to grant declaratory relief "in a
case of actual controversy within its jurisdiction[.]"
28 U.S.C. § 2201(a). That criteria is not met in this
case. Plaintiff challenges the constitutionality of the FTC
A. But he has not alleged that he pursued, let alone
exhausted, a claim under the FTCA by first presenting the
claim "to the appropriate Federal agency" and
obtaining a final written denial, or allowing six months to
elapse without a final disposition. 28 U.S.C. § 2675(a).
It is established in this circuit that this Court
"lack[s] subject matter jurisdiction, or . . . the
functional equivalent of it" over an unexhausted FTCA
claim. Simpkins v. District of Columbia Gov't,
108 F.3d 366, 371 (D.C. Cir. 2007); see AM v.
Rumsfeld, 649 F.3d 762, 775 (D.C. Cir. 2011) (finding an
FTCA claim not previously presented to the appropriate agency
barred on "jurisdictional" grounds) (citation and
internal quotation marks omitted)); Abdurrahman v.
Engstrom, 168 Fed.Appx. 445, 445 (D.C. Cir. 2005) (per
curiam) (affirming district court's dismissal of
unexhausted FTCA claim "for lack of subject matter
jurisdiction"). And in the absence of "a cognizable
cause of action, " a plaintiff has "no basis upon
which to seek declaratory relief." Ali, 649
F.3d at 778.
foregoing reasons, this case will be dismissed. A separate