In an action brought by a class member who had participated in tobacco litigation in Florida as part of nationwide tobacco litigation in the late 1990s brought by several states against several tobacco companies, district court's decision to enjoin the parties to the state-court litigation from proceeding with an action in Florida state court raising matters relating to the Settlement Agreement is affirmed where: 1) the claims in the state court litigation fall squarely within the subject matter of the Settlement Agreement and the terms of the district court's permanent injunction; 2) given the broad grant of power by Congress under the interpleader statute, there can be no doubt that the district court was acting within its authority when it enjoined the state court litigation; and 3) the district court did not err in enjoining the litigation of the state action as necessary in aid of its jurisdiction as the state court complaint does not set forth claims in a manner sufficiently detached from the district court's administration of the settlement fund to avoid the permanent injunction in the federal interpleader action's final judgment.
Argued: December 1, 2009
Decided and Filed: December 23, 2009
Opinion by Circuit Judge Gilman
For Appellee: Thomas W. Hill, Kegler Brown Hill & Ritter