United States District Court, E.D. Louisiana
VIKING CONSTRUCTION GROUP, LLC ET AL.
SATTERFIELD & PONTIKES CONSTRUCTION GROUP INC. ET AL.
ORDER & REASONS
M. AFRICK UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the Court is an uncontested motion to dismiss filed by
defendants Satterfield & Pontikes, LLC (“S&P,
LLC”) and Satterfield and Pontikes, Inc.
(“S&P, Inc.) (collectively “S&P”).
For the following reasons, the motion is granted.
claims asserted in this case are rooted in the Louisiana
Racketeering Act (“Louisiana RICO”). Plaintiffs
allege that S&P formed an enterprise for the purpose of
securing federally funded construction projects in Orleans
Parish by submitting bids that members of the enterprise knew
would be low enough to guarantee awarding of the contracts
but insufficient to adequately and timely complete the work
through subcontractors. Plaintiffs assert that, after securing
contracts, S&P would negotiate change orders so as to
increase overall payments from the government while also
defrauding subcontractors out of labor, materials, supplies,
and funds.Plaintiffs further contend that defendant
CDW Services, LLC (“CDW”) participated in this
enterprise by conspiring with S&P and by filing
materially false public records.
filed this lawsuit in state court on October 27,
2017. Defendants filed a timely notice of
removal on November 20, 2017, asserting diversity
jurisdiction. Plaintiffs then filed a motion to remand
on December 15, 2017, arguing that complete diversity does
not exist. On December 19, 2017, S&P filed the
instant motion to dismiss, arguing that plaintiffs fail to
state a claim upon which relief can be granted. On January 12,
2018, the Court denied plaintiffs' motion to remand and
dismissed all claims against defendant CDW. The Court now
turns to S&P's motion to dismiss, to which plaintiffs
have not responded.
12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure permit a
district court to dismiss a complaint, or any part of it,
when a plaintiff has not set forth well-pleaded factual
allegations that would entitle him to relief. See Bell
Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007);
Cuvillier v. Taylor, 503 F.3d 397, 401 (5th Cir.
2007). A plaintiff's factual allegations must
“raise a right to relief above the speculative
level.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. In other
words, a complaint “must contain sufficient factual
matter, accepted as true, to ‘state a claim to relief
that is plausible on its face.'” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570)).
facially plausible claim is one where “the plaintiff
pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the
reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the
misconduct alleged.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at
678. If the well-pleaded factual allegations
“do not permit the court to infer more than the mere
possibility of misconduct, ” then “the complaint
has alleged-but it has not ‘show[n]'-‘that
the pleader is entitled to relief.'”
Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679 (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P.
8(a)(2)) (alteration in original).
assessing the complaint, the Court must accept all
well-pleaded factual allegations as true and liberally
construe all such allegations in the light most favorable to
the plaintiff. Spivey, 197 F.3d at 774; Lowrey
v. Tex. A&M Univ. Sys., 117 F.3d 242, 247 (5th Cir.
1997). Where “the complaint ‘on its face show[s]
a bar to relief, '” then dismissal is the
appropriate course. Cutrer v. McMillan, 308 Fed.
App'x. 819, 820 (5th Cir. 2009) (quoting Clark v.
Amoco Prod. Co., 794 F.2d 967, 970 (5th Cir. 1986)).
state a valid civil claim under Louisiana RICO, a party must
show that (1) a person engaged in (2) a pattern of
racketeering activity (3) connected to the acquisition,
establishment, conduct, or control of an
enterprise. Brown v. Protective Life Ins.
Co., 353 F.3d 405, 407 (5th Cir. 2003). The term
“pattern of racketeering activity” means
engaging in at least two incidents of racketeering activity
that have the same or similar intents, results, principals,
victims, or methods of commission or otherwise are
interrelated by distinguishing characteristics and are not
isolated incidents, provided at least one of such incidents
occurs after August 21, 1992, and that the last of such
incidents occurs within five years after a prior incident of
La. Rev. Stat. 15:1352(C). “Racketeering
activity” means “committing, attempting to
commit, conspiring to commit, or soliciting, coercing, or
intimidating another person to commit any crime that is
punishable under” one of 65 specified ...