Charles Scoville has filed a second Traffic Monsoon appeal which, unless I’m missing something, seems to be completely pointless.

Granted the first appeal is widely seen as just an attempt to delay the inevitable, it’s still valid in the sense a defendant can exhaust all defenses available.

This second appeal doesn’t seem to serve any purpose.

The second Traffic Monsoon appeal was filed on March 13th, in response to a February 16th Second Amended Order Appoint (the) Receiver.

This order reaffirmed the appointment of the Traffic Monsoon Receiver, but limited the scope of the appointment such that Scoville maintained representation of Traffic Monsoon in the first appeal.

At first I figured Scoville was appealing that decision, in that the Receiver should retain representation of Traffic Monsoon in the appeal.

This made no sense though because the Receiver would pull Traffic Monsoon from the proceedings, which is of no benefit to Scoville.

Then I figured it was a carbon-copy appeal of the first appointment order. But that also makes no sense seeing as a decision on the first appeal has yet to be made.

Scoville has filed an “interlocutory appeal”, which is defined as

an appeal of a ruling by a trial court that is made before all claims are resolved as to all parties.

The American courts disfavor such appeals, requiring parties to wait until all the claims as to all parties are resolved before any appeal can be brought to challenge any of the decisions made by the judge during the life of the case.

Why such an appeal might be disfavored in this instance is pretty obvious.

The first appeal is basically “Traffic Monsoon isn’t a Ponzi scheme” and rehashes arguments already defeated in court.

The second amended order appointing the Receiver is identical to the first order Scoville has objected to, save for the stipulation regarding the Receiver’s representation of Traffic Monsoon in the first appeal.

So if Scoville was to appeal the second amended order, he’d be filing similar, if not identical arguments in his first appeal.

Which is pointless at this stage because the first appeal hasn’t been decided yet.

If Scoville’s arguments as to the appointment of the Receiver are shot down in the first appeal, presenting them again in a second separate appeal isn’t going to make a lick of difference.

As at the time of publication the second appeal has been received by the Tenth Circuit on March 15th.

The second appeal is in the administrative stage for now, with the court requesting various paperwork from the parties.

Meanwhile the first appeal oral arguments are scheduled for hearing next week on the 21st.

A decision on the appeal will be made sometime after (could be a day, weeks or months).

Call me cynical but this second appeal reeks of Scoville’s camp expecting a loss in the first, and lining up a second waste of time on essentially the same order.

No doubt the plan is to drag the SEC’s case out even longer (the first appeal has delayed proceedings by almost a year).

I don’t know exactly how it would play out legally, but hopefully the Tenth Circuit identifies this second appeal as a waste of time sooner rather than later.


Update 25th January 2019 – On January 24th the Tenth Circuit appeals court denied Charles Scoville’s Traffic Monsoon appeal.