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Bitton v. H.S.B.C.

Civil Court of City of New York, New York County

May 30, 2013

Danielle BITTON, a/k/a Danielle Biton, Charlene Michelle Biton, Plaintiffs,
v.
H.S.B.C., Katherine Alexander, UFT, United Airlines, N.Y.P.D., F.D .N.Y., DC 37, D.A., CorporationCounsel, Kevin McKirga, AG of NY, Defendants. No. 007274/13.

Editorial Note:

This decision has been referenced in a table in the New York Supplement.

JAMES E. D'AUGUSTE, J.

Defendant Eric T. Schneiderman, in his official capacity as the Attorney General of the State of New York, moves for summary judgment dismissing the complaint. Pro se plaintiffs Danielle Biton [1] and Charlene (" Crystal" ) Biton (collectively, the " Bitons" ) also move for an order directing the court system to " determine who is Bitton ... in the State of New York." Finally, the Bitons have applied for the issuance of forty-seven subpoenas addressed to a broad spectrum of potential recipients ranging from the Prime Ministers of Israel and Great Britain to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The Bitons' factual assertions are difficult to ascertain as they are cloaked in a putative massive conspiracy purportedly perpetrated by state and federal law enforcement, public officials, mental health organizations, municipal unions, and religious groups. The Bitons appear to claim a series of harms resulting from this conspiracy, including government experimentation, rape and kidnaping, stolen identities and property, as well as being unlawfully barred from the Tribeca Film Festival. As one commentator noted, " [c]omplex conspiracies are difficult to pull off and, [as such,] [t]he more elaborate a conspiracy theory is, and the more people that would need to be involved, the less likely it is true." [2] The Bitons have not submitted any evidence demonstrating the New York State Attorney General's participation in this putative conspiracy or any cognizable loss to the Bitons perpetrated by him. Nor have the Bitons demonstrated a basis for the relief sought in their application for an order directing the New York State Unified Court System to judicially determine their identities. The Court also declines to grant the Bitons' application for forty-seven subpoenas, which seeks to supplement the numerous clerk-endorsed subpoenas that they have already secured and served.

While there is a strong public interest in access to the courts, there sometimes comes a point when the judiciary is required to perform a gatekeeper role to prevent the further misuse of the judicial process by self-represented litigants. In re Mueller, 96 A.D.3d 948, 946 N.Y.S.2d 503 (2d Dep't 2012); Melnitzky v. Uribe, 33 A.D.3d 373, 822 N.Y.S.2d 56 (1st Dep't 2006). This is because frivolous lawsuits " subject innocent parties to the expense and effort of mounting a defense, are a drain on already sparse judicial resources and unnecessarily deplete public funds." Muka v. Hancock, Estabrook, Ryan, Shove & Hust, 120 Misc.2d 146, 465 N.Y.S.2d 416 (Sup.Ct. Onondaga County 1983). The Bitons have crossed the threshold necessitating the construction of the following gatekeeper mechanism:

(1) Future Litigation: the Bitons are enjoined from filing new self-represented actions in the Civil Court of the City of New York without prior judicial approval, which may be obtained by directing such application to the undersigned or, in the alternative, the supervising judge for the applicable county; and
(2) Pending Litigation: the Bitons are enjoined from serving party discovery on notice or clerk-endorsed subpoenas on non-parties in any action pending in the Civil Court of the City of New York. All discovery requests or subpoenas require prior judicial approval before they are served.

The Clerk is directed to serve a copy of this decision and order on the plaintiffs and enter judgment dismissing the case as filed against the New York State Attorney General. This constitutes the decision and order of the Court.


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