Matter Involving Avoidance of Preferential Vehicle Lien, Plus Civil Rights, Criminal and Employment Matters - Civil Rights Law - U.S. Tenth Circuit
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Matter Involving Avoidance of Preferential Vehicle Lien, Plus Civil Rights, Criminal and Employment Matters

In re: Trout, No. 09-1332, concerned a bankruptcy trustee's appeal from a decision of the bankruptcy appellate panel affirming the bankruptcy court's determination that, having successfully avoided a preferential vehicle lien under 11 U.S.C. section 547, the trustee was not entitled to a money judgment equal to the value of the avoided liens under section 550(a).  The court of appeals affirmed, on the ground that the bankruptcy estate had been sufficiently returned to its pre-transfer status by avoiding the preferential lien at issue and stepping into the lien priority of the avoided creditor under 11 U.S.C. section 551.

Narotzky v. Natrona Cty. Mem. Hosp. Bd. of Trustees, No. 09-8053, involved an action by doctors against their former hospital employer, stating a procedural due process claim based on a theory of constructive discharge and a claim based on the warrantless search of plaintiffs' lockers.  The court of appeals affirmed summary judgment for defendant, on the ground that no constructive discharge occurred and that the search was reasonable, given the context and circumstances.

Thomas v. Parker, No. 09-6203, concerned an action challenging various conditions of plaintiff's confinement at the James Crabtree Correctional Center (JCCC), a prison in the Oklahoma Department of Corrections (ODOC).  The Tenth Circuit affirmed the dismissal of the action, on the grounds that 1) the district court did not err in concluding that plaintiff failed to exhaust his administrative remedies when he did not properly complete all three required written steps; 2) plaintiff's allegations were insufficient to establish fraud on the court because, at most, they showed the nondisclosure of evidence or the alteration of evidence by a party, with no showing of attorney involvement; and 3) it is difficult to see how there could be actionable fraud on the court if the district court had before it the correct documents when it made its final decision.

In US v. Hasan, No. 08-5137, the court of appeals affirmed defendant's perjury convictions in part, on the ground that, although the prosecutor could have done more to clarify, the district court would not have clearly or obviously erred in concluding that a reasonable jury could find that the questions were not the cause of defendant's inconsistent answers.  However, the court vacated in part on the ground that the district court needed to determine in the first instance whether defendant spoke primarily a language other than the English language under the proper legal standard.

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