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Dynamic Worldwide Logistics, Inc. v. Exclusive Expressions, LLC

United States District Court, S.D. New York

January 6, 2015


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[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

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For Dynamic Worldwide Logistics, Inc., Plaintiff: Sandra Gale Behrle, Law Offices of Sandra Gale Behrle, New York, NY.

For Exclusive Expressions, LLC, David Saad, Joseph Saad, Defendants: Mark L. McKew, The Law Office of Mark McKew, PLLC, New York, NY.

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Edgardo Ramos, United States District Judge.

Dynamic Worldwide Logistics, Inc. (" Dynamic" or " Plaintiff) brings suit against Exclusive Expressions, LLC (" Exclusive" ), David Saad, and Joseph Saad (together with Dynamic, " Defendants" ) for conversion and breach of contract. See Compl., Doc. 2. The parties entered into a contract in which Dynamic promised to arrange for the transportation of leather goods from China to the United States. Id. at ¶ 7. The present dispute centers on Defendants' failure to tender the corresponding bills of lading following delivery of the items to Defendants in New York City. Id. at ¶ ¶ 18, 23. Defendants moved to dismiss the Complaint pursuant to Rule 12(c) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. See Defs.' Mem. L. Support Mot. Dismiss, Doc. 19. For the reasons set forth below, Defendants' motion is GRANTED.

I. Background[1]

Dynamic is a New Jersey-based non-vessel-operating common carrier (" NVOCC" ) that provides transportation services between Asia and the United States. Compl. at ¶ 1. Exclusive, a New York Limited Liability Company, imports goods from China. Id. at ¶ 2. David and Joseph Saad are alleged to be either members or managers of Exclusive who currently reside in New York. Id. at ¶ 3-4.

Dynamic claims that it contracted with Exclusive to arrange for the transportation of handbags, wallets, and evening bags from China to New York City. Id. at ¶ ¶ 7, 8-9. In 2012-- the only date specified in the entire Complaint--Dynamic allegedly issued a total of eight negotiable bills of lading, which designated Exclusive as the consignee.[2] Id. at ¶ ¶ 8-9. One set of shipments originated from the Chinese city of Yantian; the second set came from Shanghai. Id. Beyond that, the Complaint is devoid of facts ordinarily relevant to disputes involving the maritime transportation of goods. For example, the Complaint does not cite a single term contained in the bills nor identifies the parties bound thereto. Moreover, it does not identify the shipper or consignor, or name the notify party.[3]

Without establishing the source of Exclusive's obligation or reciting any contractual provisions, Plaintiff claims that Exclusive was required to provide Dynamic with the original bills of lading in order to receive delivery of the shipments. Id. at ¶ 10. Despite this alleged requirement, however, a Dynamic employee, who was not identified in the Complaint, authorized the delivery of the shipments to Exclusive

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without collecting the bills of lading. Id. at 11. The employee did so relying on a purported promise from an employee at Exclusive, who was also not identified in the Complaint, that it would surrender the bills of lading to Dynamic at some future point in time. Id. The Complaint fails to indicate when the promise was made and where the goods were at that point in time. Plaintiff states that it has repeatedly demanded the original bills of lading from Exclusive to no avail. Id. at ¶ 12. Yet, the number, dates, and method of these requests are not specified in the Complaint, nor are the individuals by whom and to whom the requests were made. Consequently, Plaintiff argues that Exclusive wrongfully converted the goods and breached an unspecified contract with Dynamic, all under the " direction and guidance" of David and Joseph Saad. Id. at ¶ ¶ 16-23.

Nowhere in the Complaint does Plaintiff allege that it owned, possessed or controlled the goods delivered to Defendants. Although it fails to describe any specific harm it has suffered, Dynamic seeks damages in excess of $374,154 for the conversion of property and breach of contract, along with costs and attorney fees. Id. at ¶ 23.

II. Discussion

A. 12(c) Motion to Dismiss Standard

Rule 12(c) provides that " [a]fter the pleadings are closed--but early enough not to delay trial--a party may move for judgment on the pleadings." Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(c). The Court applies the same standard of review to a Rule 12(c) motion as it does to a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted under ...

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