Category Archives: Opinions and Analysis

10th Circuit: Securities laws apply to fraud defendant’s sales to foreign customers

The SEC brought a civil enforcement action against Charles Scoville, a resident of Utah, and his company, Traffic Monsoon, alleging that they ran a Ponzi scheme which raked in tens of millions of dollars. About 90% of his customers were … Continue reading

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NMCA: Officer’s tap on car window was not a seizure

Jennifer Simpson parked her car in a lot at a city park at 11:00 p.m. and turned off the car’s lights. A police officer saw this and believed her actions were suspicious because the park had closed an hour earlier … Continue reading

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10th Circuit: REAL ID Act deprives courts of jurisdiction to consider untimely habeas petitions

Lina Thoung came to the United States illegally in 2002, and fraudulently obtained citizenship here in 2007. In 2012, her fraud came to light, and she pleaded guilty and stipulated to a removal order, but could not then be deported … Continue reading

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10th Circuit: BLM not entitled to key to inspect well sites on private land

In Maralex Resources, Inc. v. Barnhardt, the Tenth Circuit reversed a district court’s order that had granted the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) authority to require a private landowner to provide it with a key to access and inspect oil and gas wells. Although … Continue reading

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NM Supreme Court issues opinion explaining its suspension of attorney Eric Dixon

In November 2018, the New Mexico Supreme Court suspended prominent Portales lawyer Eric Dixon from the practice of law for at least nine months. Yesterday, the Court issued a unanimous opinion explaining its decision. The Court stated that Mr. Dixon … Continue reading

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NMCA: Corpus delicti rule satisfied by circumstantial evidence

The Court of Appeals, in State v. Platero, has overturned a trial court order dismissing a vehicular homicide charge before trial because the State did not plan to offer any expert testimony that the rollover car crash at issue killed … Continue reading

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NMSC: Tort Claims Act waives sovereign immunity for loss of consortium claims

Today the New Mexico Supreme Court issued its decision in Thompson v. City of Albuquerque, holding that the Tort Claims Act waives the state government’s sovereign immunity for loss of consortium claims. The case was brought by the minor children … Continue reading

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Tenth Circuit upholds New Mexico’s challenge to DOI Indian gaming regulations

The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act requires states to negotiate in good faith with Indian tribes who seek to establish a gaming compact with the state, and sets forth procedures for the negotiation process, including mediation. Ultimately, if the parties are … Continue reading

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10th Circuit rejects Osage tribal members’ claim that trust accounting should have covered longer time period

In Fletcher v. United States, the Tenth Circuit (in an opinion by Judge Paul Kelly) rejected claims by members of the Osage Tribe of Oklahoma that the district court improperly limited the government’s obligation to perform an accounting of revenues … Continue reading

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NM Supreme Court: Texas doctor’s sovereign immunity will be upheld in medical malpractice case

Yesterday, the New Mexico Supreme Court issued its decision in the closely-watched case of Montaño v. Frezza. The case arose out of medical treatment that a New Mexico resident, Kimberly Montaño, received from a physician at Texas Tech University Hospital … Continue reading

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