United States District Court, N.D. Mississippi, Oxford Division
AUTO PARTS MANUFACTURING MISSISSIPPI INC., a Mississippi corporation PLAINTIFF
KING CONSTRUCTION OF HOUSTON, LLC, a Mississippi limited liability company; NOATEX CORPORATION, a California corporation; and KOHN LAW GROUP, INC., a California corporation DEFENDANTS
ORDER PURGING DEFENDANT KOHN LAW GROUP. INC. OF CIVIL
CONTEMPT AND ENTERING JUDGMENT
court entered an opinion and order on June 14, 2017, granting
the Plaintiffs motion for the imposition of coercive and
compensatory sanctions against the defendant Kohn Law Group,
Inc. ("Kohn"), based on Kohn's violation of a
permanent injunction entered by this Court prohibiting Kohn
from filing any proceedings against the Plaintiff related to
certain interpled funds without first obtaining a court order
from this Court permitting it do so. Auto Parts
Manufacturing Mississippi Inc. v. King Construction
of Houston, LLC, 258 F.Supp.3d 740, 745-46 (N.D. Miss.
2017). In that opinion and order, this Court ordered Kohn to
pay compensatory sanctions to the Plaintiff in the form of
attorneys' fees and costs in the amount of $373, 692.50,
and imposed coercive sanctions of $100 per day to be paid to
this Court's registry from the date of June 14, 2017,
until the date that Kohn satisfied two conditions, at which
point it would be purged of contempt: (1) that Kohn dismissed
with prejudice the claims in the case it had filed in the
Central District of California (No. 2:12-cv-08063); and (2)
that Kohn in turn filed a notice in this case attaching a
final order of dismissal with prejudice that formally
dismissed the claims in the Central District of California
case. Id. at 753. The United States Court of Appeals
for the Fifth Circuit affirmed this court's ruling on May
31, 2018. Auto Parts Manufacturing Mississippi, Inc. v.
King Construction of Houston, LLC, 725 Fed.Appx. 305
(5th Cir. May 31, 2018). The United States Supreme Court then
denied Kohn's petition for a writ of certiorari on
December 10, 2018. Auto Parts Manufacturing Mississippi,
Inc. v. King Construction of Houston, LLC, 139 S.Ct. 640
(Dec. 10, 2018).
have inherent power to enforce compliance with their lawful
orders through civil contempt." Spallone v. United
States, 493 U.S. 265, 276 (1990) (citations omitted).
"Civil contempt is designed to force the [disobedient
party] to comply with an order of the court." Willy
v. Coastal Corp., 503 U.S. 131, 139 (1992); see
Ozmun v. Portfolio Recovery Assocs., LLC, No.
A-16-CA-940-SS, 2018 WL 912286, at *2 (W.D. Tex. Feb. 15,
2018) (civil contempt is intended to "coerce the
contemnor into compliance with a court order or to compensate
another party for the contemnor's violation....").
Once a civil contemnor complies with the underlying order, he
is purged of the contempt. Hicks v. Feiock, 485 U.S.
624, 633 (1988) (he "carr[ies] the keys of [his] prison
in [his] own pockets" (internal quotation marks
omitted)); United States v. Alvarez, 489 F.Supp.2d
714, 719 (W.D. Tex. 2007).
has complied with the Court's ruling as to the coercive
sanctions and has dismissed the California action, filed a
notice in this case demonstrating that the California action
has been dismissed, and has paid the full required sum of
coercive sanctions into this Court's registry [Doc. No.
369]. Accordingly, and pursuant to its previous ruling, the
court finds that Kohn Law Group has purged itself of civil
however, has not paid the compensatory sanctions that the
Court awarded to the Plaintiff in the amount of $373, 692.50.
Because those sanctions were compensatory in nature, the
Court directs entry of final judgment in that amount plus
interest in favor of the Plaintiff and against defendant Kohn
Law Group, Inc. See, e.g., United States of America v.
Ireland, No. 2:11-CV-14068, 2019 WL 3759533, at *2 (E.D.
Mich. July 24, 2019); Mackler Productions, Inc. v. Turtle
Bay Apparel Corp., 153 F.Supp.2d 504, 511-12 (S.D.N.Y.
2001); Rudd v. Advance Bedding Corp., No.
95 CV 2099, 1997 WL 139001, at *1 (E.D.N.Y. Mar. 19, 1997).
it is hereby ORDERED and ADJUDGED that:
defendant Kohn Law Group, Inc. is PURGED of civil contempt;
judgment is ENTERED in favor of the Plaintiff and against the
defendant Kohn Law Group, Inc. in the amount of $373, 692.50,
plus post-judgment interest at the rate of 1.94% per annum,
for all of which execution may issue as provided by law; and