United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Terre Haute Division
ENTRY DISMISSING ACTION AND DIRECTING ENTRY OF FINAL JUDGMENT
JANE MAGNUS-STINSON, District Judge.
Petitioner Abduwali Abdukhadir Muse is confined within this District and seeks a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241(c)(3).
Muse's request to proceed in forma pauperis is granted.
Muse plead guilty in No. 09 Cr. 512 (LAP) in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York to: one count of hijacking a ship in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2280; one count of conspiracy to hijack three ships, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2280; one count of hostage taking, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1203; one count of conspiracy to engage in hostage taking, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1203; one count of kidnapping, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1201; and one count of conspiracy to engage in kidnapping, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1201. Petitioner was sentenced to an executed sentence of 405 months. There was no appeal taken from this disposition.
Muse challenges his convictions just described.
Muse filed a motion for relief pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255. The trial court denied that motion on September 30, 2013. One of the claims presented by Muse and rejected by the trial court in the § 2255 action has resurfaced as the sole claim in this habeas action. This is the claim that the trial court lacked jurisdiction over Muse because he was a juvenile and that the magistrate judge lacked the authority to determine the question of Muse's age.
A 28 U.S.C. § 2255 motion is the presumptive means by which a federal prisoner can challenge his conviction or sentence, see Davis v. United States, 417 U.S. 333, 343 (1974), although 28 U.S.C. § 2241 also supplies a basis for collateral relief under limited circumstances. "A federal prisoner may use a § 2241 petition for a writ of habeas corpus to attack his conviction or sentence only if § 2255 is inadequate or ineffective.'" Hill v. Werlinger, 695 F.3d 644, 645 (7th Cir. 2012) (quoting 28 U.S.C. § 2255(e)).
The Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has held that Section 2255 is only inadequate or ineffective when three requirements are satisfied: (1) the petitioner relies on a new case of statutory interpretation rather than a constitutional decision; (2) the case was decided after his first Section 2255 motion but is retroactive; and (3) the alleged error results in a miscarriage of justice. See Brown v. Caraway, 719 F.3d 583, 586 (7th Cir. 2013); Brown v. Rios, 696 F.3d 638, 640 (7th Cir. 2012).
Muse cites United States v. Harden, 758 F.3d 886 (7th Cir. 2014), as new authority for his challenge to the magistrate judge's authority. Muse's reliance on Harden is misplaced. Harden is premised on longstanding Supreme Court precedents. See, e.g., Peretz v. United States, 501 U.S. 923, 931-33 (1991); Johnson v. Ohio, 419 U.S. 924, 925 (1974); Brady v. United States, 397 U.S. 742, 748 (1970). Moreover, Harden dealt with a different question. In Harden, the Seventh Circuit determined that under the Federal Magistrates' Act magistrate judges are "not permitted to accept guilty pleas in felony cases and adjudge a defendant guilty." Harden, 758 F.3d at 888-91. In Muse's case, it was the Article III judge who conducted the change-of-plea hearing. The magistrate judge conducted an age hearing. The 28 U.S.C. § 2255 motion was considered and rejected on this point and Harden would not dictate a different outcome.
Federal courts are authorized to dismiss summarily any habeas petition that appears legally insufficient on its face." McFarland v. Scott, 512 U.S. 849, 856 (1994). This is an appropriate case for such a disposition for precisely the reasons explained above. That is, petitioner Muse has sought relief pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 under circumstances which do not permit or justify the use of that remedy. His petition for a writ of habeas corpus is denied.
Judgment consistent with this Entry shall now ...