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Texas Law
 
United States of America v. Timothy Bullard

DALLAS, TX — An Dallas, Texas, man was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Sidney A. Fitzwater to 188 months in federal prison and a lifetime of supervised release on a child pornography conviction, announced Acting U.S. Attorney John R. Parker of the Northern District of Texas.

Timothy Bullard, 35, pleaded guilty in August 2014 to one count of transporting and shipping child pornography.<... More...
   $0 (01-30-2015 - TX)

Harry M. Whittington, et al. v. City of Austin, et al.

The City elected to take property belonging to the Whittingtons. As part of the process,
the City paid a deposit into the registry of the trial court, and the deposit was later placed in an
investment account with the permission of the parties. After the supreme court determined that the
condemnation of the property was proper, the district court awarded the investment income to theMore...
   $0 (01-29-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Romeo Serna Sr.

LAREDO, TX - Romeo Serna Sr., 52, has been ordered to federal prison following his convictions on multiple conspiracies related to the distribution of narcotics within 1,000 feet of school, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson. Serna pleaded guilty June 17, 2013, to multiple conspiracies to possess with intent to distribute cocaine, crack cocaine and marijuana as well as multiple counts of pos... More...   $0 (01-28-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. George Yarbrough

HOUSTON - George Yarbrough, 42, a former resident of Houston, has entered a guilty plea to a one-count criminal indictment charging him with mailing a threatening communication, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson.

As part of his plea, Yarbrough has admitted that on or about Sept. 26, 2014, he knowingly mailed a communication threatening to kill a specific federal judge in Houston. T... More...
   $0 (01-28-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Rachel Hardy

DALLAS, TX — A Mansfield, Texas, woman appeared today in federal court this morning before U.S. Magistrate Judge David L. Horan and pleaded guilty to one count of food stamp benefit fraud, announced John Parker, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas

Rachel Hardy, 35, faces a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine or twice the pecuni... More...
   $0 (01-27-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Shannon Buck

DALLAS — A 42-year-old Irving, Texas, man appeared in federal court, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul D. Stickney, and pleaded guilty to an indictment charging one count of production of child pornography and one count of enhanced penalties for registered sex offenders, announced Acting U.S. Attorney John Parker of the Northern District of Texas.

Shannon Buck, who remains in federal cu... More...
   $0 (01-27-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. James Derek Howard

DALLAS, TX — A Waxahachie, Texas, man, James Derek Howard, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Ed Kinkeade to serve one year and one day in federal prison, following his guilty plea last year to a bankruptcy fraud offense. In addition, Judge Kinkeade ordered that Howard pay $13,283 in restitution to Southwest Securities, FSB. The announcement was made today by John Parker, Acting U.S. Attorney ... More...   $0 (01-28-2015 - TX)

Forrest Lake Townhouse Association, Inc. v. Billy R. Martin

This is a dispute between a homeowner and his neighborhood homeowners’ association. In three issues, Forrest Lake Townhouse Association appeals summary judgment on its lawsuit for damages and injunctive relief against homeowner Billy
2
Martin for flying the American flag in violation of the HOA’s guidelines. We affirm.
Background
Martin owns a townhome in Forrest Lake Townhomes... More...
   $0 (01-27-2015 - TX)

Financial Strategy Group, PLC v. R.K. Lowry, Jr., et al.

This is an accelerated appeal from an order denying a special appearance. We reverse.
BACKGROUND
Plaintiffs sued numerous defendants complaining of tax investment strategies marketed to plaintiffs for use on their federal tax returns for the tax years 2000 through 2005 (“Investment Strategies”). Defendant Financial Strategy Group (“Financial Strategy”) filed a special appearance, w... More...
   $0 (01-27-2015 - TX)

In Re Commitment of Terry Wayne Coyle

Terry Wayne Coyle challenges his civil commitment as a sexually violent
predator. See Tex. Health & Safety Code Ann. §§ 841.001-.151 (West 2010 &
Supp. 2014) (the SVP statute). In one issue, Coyle complains that he received
ineffective assistance of counsel because his retained trial counsel failed to plead
and present evidence supporting a limitations defense.1 We conclude that ... More...
   $0 (01-22-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. David Wayne Schroeder

In Midland, 33-year-old David Wayne Schroeder of Monahans, TX, faces up to ten years in federal prison for theft of approximately $58,000 worth of oil announced Acting United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr., and FBI Special Agent in Charge Douglas E. Lindquist, El Paso Division.

Appearing yesterday before United States Magistrate Judge David Counts, Schroeder pleaded guilty to thre... More...
   $0 (01-23-2015 - TX)

Master Capital Solutions Corp. v. Sergio Rene Sanchez Araujo, Lorena Armida Beltran Juarez and Grupo Promotor Setresa S. De RL. de C.V.

Sergio Rene Sanchez Araujo, Lorena Armida Beltran Juarez, and Grupo Promotor Setresa
S. de RL. de C.V. (hereinafter, “Appellees”) sued Master Capital Solutions Corp. (hereinafter,
“Master Capital”) and two other parties1 for failing to fund a promised $3.65 million real estate
loan. After Appellees obtained a default judgment against Master Capital and Liberty Lending,2
Mas... More...
   $0 (01-21-2015 - TX)

In the Interest of Z.M., W.M., and L.M., Children

Katy Miles and Ben Murphy have three children, five-year-old Zachary Murphy, two-year-old Wilson Murphy, and one-year-old Lucy Murphy.1 Miles and Murphy, both unemployed high-school dropouts, had a tumultuous, abusive relationship, lived with the children in a filthy trailer, and survived by Murphy’s manufacture of methamphetamine. The parental rights of both Miles and Murphy to Zachary, Wilson,... More...   $0 (01-23-2015 - TX)

Ex Parte Mark Villarreal

Mark Villarreal appeals the trial court’s order denying his petition for expunction. Currently before us is a joint motion filed by Villarreal and the Texas Department of Public Safety requesting that we (1) affirm the trial court’s judgment as it pertains to the arrest on October 6, 2007 for Possession of Marijuana; (2) reverse the portion of the judgment denying an expunction of the arrest o... More...   $0 (01-21-2015 - TX)

Armstrong DLO Properties, LLC v. Todd A. Furniss and Heather E. Furniss

Appellant Armstrong DLO Properties, LLC (“ADLO”) appeals the trial court’s order granting summary judgment that ADLO take nothing in favor of appellees Todd A. Furniss and Heather E. Furniss (“the Furnisses”). The order also awarded the Furnisses $40,670 in attorney’s fees against ADLO. The controversy brought before us is respecting title to a portion of a continuous strip of real pro... More...   $0 (01-21-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Carlos Lavin Ibarra

HOUSTON, TX – Carlos Lavin Ibarra, 34, of Houston, has been sentenced to federal prison following his conviction on one count of bank fraud, announced United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson. Ibarra pleaded guilty July 9, 2014.

Today, U.S. District Judge Nancy Atlas, who accepted the guilty plea, stated that the idea that a banker takes money out of someone else's account without author... More...
   $0 (01-20-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Jeani Mulligan

DALLAS, TX — A Keller, Texas, woman who continued to collect a family member’s Social Security retirement insurance benefits even after that family member died, was sentenced this afternoon, announced John Parker, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas.

Jeani Mulligan, 43, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Jane J. Boyle to serve 27 months in federal prison. Mulliga... More...
   $0 (01-15-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. First United Bank of Dimmitt, Texas

Fort Worth, TX -The Justice Department announced today that First United Bank, of Dimmitt, Texas, will maintain uniform pricing policies, conduct employee training and pay $140,000 as part of a settlement to resolve allegations that it engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination on the basis of national origin.

The settlement, which is subject to court approval, was filed in conju... More...
   $0 (01-15-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Melva Mitchell

FORT WORTH, TX — The owner/operator of a chiropractic clinic in Fort Worth, Texas, was sentenced this morning on a federal felony conviction stemming from her submission of false reimbursement claims to Medicare and Medicaid, announced Acting U.S. Attorney John Parker of the Northern District of Texas.

Melva Mitchell, 35, of Fort Worth, a licensed chiropractor, was sentenced by U.S. Dis... More...
   $0 (01-20-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Jesus Marquez

The United States of America charged Jesus Marquez with retaliation against a federal judge or federal law enforcement officer in violation of 18 U.S.C. 1521.

Set forth below are some of the docket entries relating to this case:

04/02/2014 1 SEALED INDICTMENT (Redacted Version) filed Unredacted document sealed pursuant to E-Government Act of 2002 as to Jesus Marquez (1) count(s)... More...
   $0 (04-02-2014 - TX)

United States of America v. Deion Lockhard a/k/a Memphis, Brandon Di'Jion Shpairo a/k/a Chicago, a/k/a B'radd, a/k/a Brandon Shapiro, Tai Von Lynch, Richard Gray a/ka/ Crenshaw. Emmanual Lockhart a/k/a E Jay, Timothy Keith McCulloch, Jr. a/k/a TJ

El Paso, TX - The United States of America charged Deion Lockhard a/k/a Memphis, Brandon Di'Jion Shpairo a/k/a Chicago, a/k/a B'radd, a/k/a Brandon Shapiro, Tai Von Lynch, Richard Gray a/ka/ Crenshaw. Emmanual Lockhart a/k/a E Jay, Timothy Keith McCulloch, Jr. a/k/a TJ sex trafficking by force, fraud or coercion in violation of 18 U.S.C. 1591, aiding and abetting sex trafficking of children in vio... More...   $0 (01-16-2015 - TX)

Frank J. Schuster v. Kathleen Wild

Appellants, Frank J. Schuster, individually and as executor of the estate of Frank
Schuster, Frank Schuster Farms, Inc., Frank Schuster Farms and Frank Schuster Farms,
2
Ltd., appeal from the trial court’s refusal to confirm the arbitrator’s order and its vacatur of that award. See TEX. CIV. PRAC. & REM. CODE ANN. § 171.098 (West, Westlaw through 2013 3d C.S.) (“A party may appe... More...
   $0 (01-15-2015 - TX)

The City of Galveston, Texas v. Joe Murphy, Yoram Ben-Amram and Galtex Development, LLC

Appellees Joe Murphy, Yoram Ben-Amram, and Galtex Development, LLC1 sued the City of Galveston, claiming that the City unconstitutionally took their property without just compensation through inverse condemnation. The City filed a plea to the jurisdiction, which the trial court denied. The City timely filed this
1 We refer to the appellees collectively as the “Property Owners.”
interlo... More...
   $0 (01-13-2015 - TX)

Ruby Yarbrough and Wilburn E. Yarbrough v. Household Finance Corporation III

In an issue of first impression, we must decide whether an affirmative defense of forgery, supported by an affidavit alleging that the defendants’ signatures on a deed of trust were forged, raises a genuine issue of title intertwined with the issue of possession sufficient to deprive a justice court of jurisdiction in a forcible detainer action. We hold that it does. The courts below lacked juri... More...   $0 (01-13-2015 - TX)

Sondra Jackson v. Erik Dean

Appellant Sondra Jackson sought to domesticate a judgment she had obtained against appellee Erik Dean in Alabama. Dean successfully moved to vacate the judgment on the basis that the Alabama court lacked personal jurisdiction over him. On appeal, Jackson contends that the trial court erred because the evidence established that Dean had sufficient contacts with Alabama to support the Alabama courtâ... More...   $0 (01-16-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Charles Smolens

PLANO, TX – A 38-year-old man has been sentenced to federal prison for child pornography violations in the Eastern District of Texas.

Charles Smolens, of Little Elm. Texas, pleaded guilty on April 29, 2014 to conspiracy to produce child pornography and distribution of child pornography, and was sentenced to 365 months in federal prison today by U.S. District Marcia Crone.

Accor... More...
   $0 (01-09-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Juan Francisco Saenz-Tamez

BEAUMONT, TX - The current head of the Mexican drug trafficking organization, the Gulf Cartel, or Cartel del Golfo, has pleaded guilty to drug trafficking charges in the Eastern District of Texas.

Juan Francisco Saenz-Tamez, 23, of Camargo, Tamaulipas, Mexico, pleaded guilty to distribution and possession with intent to distribute cocaine, conspiracy to distribute and possessi... More...
   $0 (01-15-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Raul Salazar

In San Antonio today, U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia sentenced 43-year-old Raul Salazar to 70 months in federal prison followed by a 20 years of supervised release for receipt of child pornography announced Acting United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr., and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Special Agent in Charge Janice Ayala.

On August 28, 2013, federal and state authori... More...
   $0 (01-08-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Forest Park Medical Center, LLC

San Antonio, TX - Forest Park Medical Center, LLC (“FPMC”), a physician-owned hospital located in Dallas, Texas, will pay $215,000 under a civil settlement with the United States Department of Justice, announced Acting United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr. The settlement resolves allegations that the hospital paid kickbacks in exchange for referrals of patients covered by the federal ... More...   $0 (01-15-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Agustin Sergio Deleon Garza

San Antonio, TX - A federal jury convicted 36-year-old Agustin Sergio Deleon Garza for his role in the kidnapping of a Mexican businessman in December 2013. The jury found Deleon Garza guilty of one count of conspiracy to kidnap; one count of aiding and abetting kidnapping; two counts of receipt of ransom money; one count of interstate communication of ransom; one count of conspiracy to commit mon... More...   $0 (01-16-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Flor Angelica Bustillos

LUBBOCK, TX — Seven defendants charged with various offenses stemming from their respective roles in a methamphetamine distribution conspiracy have pleaded guilty, announced John Parker, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas.

The last defendant charged in the case entered a guilty plea. Flor Angelica Bustillos, 26, of Phoenix, Arizona, pleaded guilty, before U.S. Distr... More...
   $0 (01-09-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Jason Allen Neff

DALLAS, TX — Jason Allen Neff, 34, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Sam A. Lindsay to serve a total of 60 months in federal prison and ordered to pay $79,440 in restitution, following his guilty plea in a “swatting” case last summer, announced John Parker, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas.

Swatting refers to falsely reporting an emergency to a police depar... More...
   $0 (01-09-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Leonel Martiatu and Alian Gamboa

DALLAS, TX — Two men who conspired together to use counterfeit credit cards to make hundreds of thousands of dollars of purchases at various Sam’s Club store locations in North Texas and Missouri, were sentenced, announced John Parker, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas.

Leonel Martiatu, 29, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Barbara M. G. Lynn to serve a total ... More...
   $0 (01-15-2015 - TX)

Marco Calvillo v. William Frazier a/k/a Bill Frazier, individually and d/b/a Kliff Klub

Marco Calvillo appeals the trial court’s summary judgment on his claims under the Texas
Dram Shop Act (the Act). In seven issues, Calvillo argues fact issues precluding summary
judgment exist concerning whether Felicia Janis was provided, sold, or served alcohol by the
Kliff Klub and whether her intoxication was apparent to the provider of alcoholic beverages; the
safe harbor def... More...
   $0 (01-13-2015 - TX)

Mike and Geri Jones v. Robert and Patricia Zearfoss

This case involves alleged misrepresentations and nondisclosures made during the sale of a residence. Mike and Geri Jones sued Robert and Patricia Zearfoss asserting DTPA, statutory real estate fraud, common law fraud, negligent misrepresentation, and negligence claims. Subsequently, the Zearfosses filed a motion for summary judgment, asserting both no-evidence and traditional grounds. The trial c... More...   $0 (01-07-2015 - TX)

Carol Paselk v. Justice of the Peace, Precinct 1, Yvonne King

Carol Paselk appeals an order denying her application for writ of certiorari,1 which
argued that the Honorable Yvonne King, Hopkins County Justice of the Peace—Precinct One,
did not have jurisdiction to enter an order authorizing seizure of her fifty-seven horses. Because
Paselk’s application for writ of certiorari was untimely, we find that the County Court of
Hopkins County p... More...
   $0 (01-09-2015 - TX)

GM Metal, Inc. v. JP Environmental Recycling, LLC

In this breach of contract case, Appellant GM Metal, Inc. challenges the legal and factual sufficiency of the evidence to support the trial court’s judgment in favor of Appellee JP Environmental Recycling, LLC. We will affirm.
1See Tex. R. App. P. 47.4.
2
In January 2010, GM contracted with JP to purchase two excavators—a Caterpillar 320 CL and a Hitachi 2X270 LC—for a total pric... More...
   $0 (01-08-2015 - TX)

In the Matter of L.W.

Appellant L.W. appeals from a judgment for temporary court-ordered inpatient mental-health services. The trial court ordered that L.W. be committed for mental-health services at North Texas State Hospital (NTSH) for a period of time not to exceed ninety days.2 This appeal followed. L.W. raises two issues:
1See Tex. R. App. P. 47.4.
2Approximately one month after the commitment hearing was ... More...
   $0 (01-09-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Maria Blake aka Jessic or Yvonne

El Paso, TX - Maria Blake (aka “Jessica”, “Yvonne”), age 45, and her 45–year-old husband, Ronald, were sentenced to 30 months and six months in federal prison respectively inducing foreign or interstate travel for prostitution announced Acting United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Acting Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Special Agent in Charge Tom Hernandez and Federal Bureau o... More...   $0 (01-06-2015 - TX)

United States of America v. Stephen Mark Hilliard, Michael Duraine Cowan, II,Berta Laura McFaddin and Cynthia Gayle Hirsch

Midland County, TX - Three former Permian Basin business owners and a title company executive were sentenced for their roles in a mortgage fraud scheme that involved approximately 800 real estate properties and about $45 million in loans announced Acting United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr., and Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge Douglas E. Lindquist, El Paso Division... More...   $0 (01-07-2015 - TX)

 
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