Los Lobos Renewable Power, LLC and Lightning Dock Geothermal, H1-O1, LLC v Americulture, Inc. and Seawright

Americulture and Seawright appealed the denial of their anti-SLAPP motion. The panel, with one judge dissenting as to jurisdiction, affirmed. The majority held that while Americulture and Seawright failed to timely file a petition to appeal the order, jurisdiction exists under the collateral order doctrine as the order conclusively decided whether New Mexico’s anti-SLAPP statue applied in federal court, refusal to apply the statute presents purely legal issue and the order would be effectively unreviewable as the sole aim of the statute is to give parties expeditious trial and appellate process and that would be lost without review now and Americulture’s argument that the statue confers immunity also points to jurisdiction. Baldock dissented arguing that the collateral order doctrine is not satisfied here as the statue is not an immunity state, the case involves private parties in a contract dispute and a motion for judgment as a matter of law with a sanctions is available in federal court. The panel held that New Mexico’s anti-SLAPP statute, New Mexico Statutes 38-2-9.1 and 9.2 is procedural under the plain language of the statute and recent New Mexico Supreme Court precedent as it does not provide any substantive rights and merely sets out accelerated proceedings to handle motions to dismiss and appeals and thus under Eire the statute does not apply in federal courts.

Ralston v Cannon

Cannon appealed the denial of his qualified immunity motion. The panel dismissed as the denial was based on factual disputes and Cannon did not accept the facts found by the district court in arguing for reversal.