United States District Court, D. Massachusetts
CHRISTINE E. MORRISSEY, Plaintiff,
CYRIL GORDON LUNN, Defendant.
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION ON PLAINTIFF'S MOTION
FOR RELIEF FROM ORDER AND TO SET ASIDE STIPULATION AND
RELEASE [DOCKET NO. 44]
JENNIFER C. BOAL, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
matter is before the Court on plaintiff Christine
Morrissey's motion to have this Court set aside a 2002
stipulation and release approved by the Bankruptcy Court for
the District of Massachusetts. Docket No. 44. For the following
reasons, this Court recommends that the District Judge
assigned to this case deny the motion and dismiss this case.
action, Morrissey brings claims for breach of contract,
promissory estoppel, conversion, unjust enrichment, fraud,
and violations of the RICO statute. Docket No. 1. She alleges
that Lunn obtained two million dollars from Morrissey through
breach of contract and fraud resulting from Lunn's
termination of the parties' business venture and the
conversion and concealment of the assets of the business
outside of the United States. See id.
Morrissey's claims are based on alleged oral
representations Lunn made to her during the 1980s and 1990s.
had previously initiated a civil action against Lunn in
Massachusetts Superior Court on February 9, 1998. Docket No.
44 at 1; see also Complaint at ¶ 42. In 2001,
Lunn filed personal and corporate bankruptcies in the
Bankruptcy Court for the District of Massachusetts. In re
Cyril Gordon Lunn, No. 01-46312 (Bankr. D. Mass.);
In re CY Realty Corporation, No. 01-45240 (Bankr. D.
Mass.). The Superior Court matter was stayed as a result of
Lunn's bankruptcy filings. Docket No. 44 at 1.
continued to press her claims against Lunn in Bankruptcy
Court. On or about January 7, 2002, Morrissey filed an
adversary proceeding against Lunn in the Bankruptcy Court for
the District of Massachusetts. Morrissey v. Lunn,
No. 02-04004 (Bankr. D. Mass.) (the “Adversary
Proceeding”). Among other things, Morrissey alleged
that Lunn had fraudulently transferred assets to Canada to
which she claimed an interest in violation of a lien granted
to her by the Superior Court. Adversary Proceeding at Docket
reached a settlement with Lunn, which resolved all of her
claims against him. Docket No. 44-2. On October 29, 2002, the
Bankruptcy Court approved the parties' Stipulation and
Agreed Order for Dismissal of Adversary Proceeding and
Settlement of Other Claims (the “Bankruptcy
Judgment”). Id. Among other things, the
parties agreed to:
[R]elease one another from all claims existing as of the date
of this Stipulation, including without limitation any claims
that Mr. Lunn or Mr. Morrissey may have in the Superior Court
Action and the Bankruptcy Court Action. All claims brought by
Mr. Lunn and Ms. Morrissey in the Superior Court action shall
be withdrawn and released and Mr. Lunn and Ms. Morrissey
shall file the appropriate pleadings to effect the dismissal
of all claims in the Superior Court action with prejudice and
without costs or attorney fees.
Docket No. 44-2 at 4.
knowingly concealed assets from the Bankruptcy Court. As a
result, on May 18, 2006, the Bankruptcy Court revoked
Lunn's discharge. See In re Lunn, No. 01-46312
at Docket No. 82. In addition, on September 14, 2006, a
federal grand jury returned an indictment charging Lunn with
two counts of bankruptcy fraud in violation of 18 U.S.C.
§§ 152(1) & (3). United States v. Cyril
Gordon Lunn, No. 4:06-cr-40030-TSH (D. Mass.).
indictment was unsealed on August 14, 2014. Id. at
Docket No. 8. Lunn pled guilty to the charges on January 30,
2017. Id. at Docket No. 39. He was sentenced to
eighteen months in prison on July 12, 2017. Id. at
Docket Nos. 48, 49. The District Court also ordered him to
pay restitution in the amount of $6, 339.17. Id.
Morrissey had sought restitution in the criminal case.
Id. at Docket No. 47, page 5. However, the
government declined to seek restitution for Morrissey's
claims. Id. at p. 5-6, n. 4. In so doing, the
government noted the settlement between Morrissey and Lunn
and the Bankruptcy Judgment, which resolved all of
Morrissey's claims against Lunn. Id. The
government further noted the fact that it appeared that, at
the time of the settlement, Morrissey was aware that Lunn had
transferred some assets to Canada, as evidenced by
allegations she had made in the Adversary Proceeding.
Id. at 5, n. 4.
filed her complaint in this action on January 26, 2017.
Docket No. 1. Lunn appears pro se. At a status
conference on January 3, 2018, this Court inquired about the
effect of the Bankruptcy Judgment on this case. The Court
ordered plaintiff to file a copy of the Bankruptcy Judgment,
Docket No. 40, which she did on January 26, 2018. Docket No.
January 29, 2018, Morrissey filed the instant motion seeking
an order setting aside the Bankruptcy Judgment. Docket No.
44. On February 7, 2018, this Court ordered Morrissey to file
a supplemental memorandum of law in support of her motion to
set aside the Bankruptcy Judgment addressing the following
issues: (1) whether the District Court has jurisdiction to
set aside the Bankruptcy Judgment particularly where
Morrissey never appealed that judgment or otherwise sought to
set it aside; and (2) whether any claims in this action would
survive even if the Bankruptcy Judgment is not vacated.
Docket No. 50. The Court allowed Lunn the opportunity to file
a response within four weeks after service of the
supplemental memorandum of law.
February 20, 2018, Morrissey filed a supplemental memorandum
of law. Docket ...