Commercial Litigation and Arbitration

Right to Judicial Proceeding May Constitute “Property” for RICO Injury Purposes

From Avalos v. Baca, 596 F.3d 583 (9th Cir. 2010):

[I]n order to state a RICO claim, a plaintiff must show harm to a specific business or property interest. Diaz, 420 F.3d at 900 (holding that "[w]ithout a harm to a specific business or property interest . . . there is no injury to business or property within the meaning of RICO"). Avalos has failed to do so. He has not proffered any evidence of specific injury to a business, and it appears that he cannot do so because he admits that he is not a United States citizen and does not have a work visa. Avalos may be correct in contending that his right to judicial action could be considered "property" under California law, but he cannot show any harm because the allegedly coerced waiver, in fact, did not deny him access to the courts. In other words, even if the right to a judicial proceeding is a property right under California law, Avalos suffered no "harm" to that right because he was able to file his claim for over-detention (and coerced settlement) in the district court.

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