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RODRIGUEZ v. CITY OF NEW YORK

United States District Court, S.D. New York


June 10, 2004.

ADA RODRIGUEZ, et ano., Plaintiffs,
v.
THE CITY OF NEW YORK, et al., Defendants.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: LEWIS KAPLAN, District Judge

ORDER

Defendants move to dismiss the action with prejudice on the grounds that plaintiffs have failed diligently to prosecute the action. Plaintiffs have not filed any opposition to the motion. Indeed, plaintiffs have refused to accept copies of the motion papers sent to them by certified mail. See letter, Mr. Schneier, dated June 7, 2004.

The unfortunate history of this action, brought by litigants perhaps aptly characterized by the defendants as "prolific," is set out in the moving affidavit. Suffice it to say that plaintiffs, while represented by counsel, failed to make initial disclosures as required by Rule 26 and, in response to defendants' letter pointing that fact out to the Court, fired their attorney. The Court then stayed the action and extended the discovery period for months to allow plaintiffs to obtain counsel. Plaintiffs then sought unsuccessfully to block their depositions on the ground that the City had conducted Gen. Mun. L. § 50-h examinations prior to the commencement of the action.

  Months more went by. Plaintiffs conducted no discovery and failed to cooperate in defendants' efforts to do so. They made no application for the appointment of pro bono counsel until after this motion was made, this despite the fact that the Court in January 2004 pointed out their right to seek such an appointment. They then failed again to appear for their depositions.

  Plaintiffs have been amply warned. The Court's January 14, 2004 order stated that "plaintiffs must proceed with this action as best they can or suffer dismissal." It set a schedule which required completion of discovery by June 1, 2004. And it warned that "[a]ny failure to comply with this or any other order of this Court may result in the imposition of sanctions, which may include dismissal of the action with prejudice." Knowing of the June 1 discovery cutoff, they failed to appear for their depositions on May 27 and 28, 2004. At this point, it is readily apparent that plaintiffs — who are pursuing several other cases in this Court — are not prepared to go forward with this action in an appropriate and diligent manner. They have claimed more than their fair share of the resources of the Court.

  The motion to dismiss is granted, substantially on the grounds set forth in the motion papers and as set forth above. The action dismissed with prejudice.

  SO ORDERED.

20040610

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