Court Tells Convicted Fraudster Paul Hansmeier To Stop Wasting The Court’s Time With Frivolous Litigation

from the no-one-got-anywhere-by-displeasing-the-court dept

Old habits die hard, even when limited by incarceration. Convicted lawyer/Prenda mastermind Paul Hansmeier apparently isn’t going to let being locked up for 14 years steer him clear of recidivism. As was reported in late 2020 by TorrentFreak, Hansmeier began filing copyright litigation from a place he certainly shouldn’t be filing lawsuits alleging illegal actions after firing up yet another honeypot for torrented porn aficionados.

Instead of concealing his own involvement, Hansmeier is now an open book. He states that he is the copyright holder and that an investigator helped him to share his video on the adult-oriented torrent site

“Hansmeier is the owner by assignment of the copyright in a short video (the ‘Video’). Hansmeier asked an investigator to publish the Video on the Internet. The investigator published the video on the Internet via the website:”

After uploading the torrent file, the honeypot was in place and it didn’t take long before someone, the John Doe, took the bait.

“On June 24, 2020, John Doe, acting via Internet Protocol Address, logged onto the website, browsed the website until he found the Video and used specialized software to access the investigator’s computer and make a copy of the Video for himself,” the complaint reads.

Because Hansmeier is an idiot, he didn’t limit himself to suing the alleged infringers. He also named a long list of federal defendants, including the prosecutors who secured his conviction. He claimed being prosecuted (and convicted!) “chilled” his constitutional right to engage in bad faith litigation, a claim he continues to raise obliquely by engaging in plenty of bad faith litigation.

Here’s the latest on Hansmeier’s legal activities, brought to us again by TorrentFreak. (h/t Michael Vario)

The federal defendants were not happy with the dozens of cases that were filed. They argued that Hansmeier was merely trying to take revenge, noting that the complaints are insufficient to pursue a legitimate claim against any of the individual or company defendants.


“The requested restriction is sought here because of the proliferation of dozens of duplicative and vexatious lawsuits Hansmeier is now pursuing,” they argued.

“The repetitive nature of his filings and their rapidly increasing number suggest that Hansmeier intends to be vexatious. Second, it appears clear that Hansmeier’s lawsuits are little more than an attempt to harass his former federal criminal prosecutors.”

The court isn’t happy about the current state of affairs either. While it’s totally permissible for convicted people to challenge their sentences and raise questions about the laws used to convict them, there are rules they need to abide by and, considering the deference given to the government by courts, it’s hardly productive to begin your quest for justice by angering the court most likely to handle your case.

There’s a right way to do this and there’s the way Hansmeier is doing this. First, the court recounts [PDF] the numerous suits the former Prenda lawyer has filed in recent months.

Since his incarceration, Hansmeier has been involved in copious amounts of litigation on the alleged unconstitutionality of the Challenged Statutes as applied to him. His lawsuits, all of which seek declaratory and injunctive relief, allege that the statutes are unconstitutional because they either prevent him from pursuing copyright enforcement or prevent him from assisting unidentified individuals pursuing Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) enforcement claims.

It’s fully detailed in the court decision, but you might be better served with a more succinct rundown.

In May 2020, Hansmeier sued former Attorney General Bill Barr, alleging the statutes used to shutdown his bogus (and fraudulent!) copyright lawsuits were unconstitutional. This was followed by another lawsuit against Bill Barr, filed (for some reason) in Wisconsin. He also sued US Attorney Erica MacDonald in Wisconsin, alleging the unconstitutionality of laws used to block his ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) lawsuits.

Then he filed an additional sixteen (16)[!!!] lawsuits in all directions alleging he had been unconstitutionally convicted and imprisoned, all of which targeted the same statutes previous litigation had failed to prove were unconstititonal.

Enough, says the Minnesota federal court. If Hansmeier wants to keep suing, he’ll have to do so under a long list of restrictions. First, some harsh words for the lawyer who just can’t seem to stop lawyering badly.

Hansmeier’s insistence on filing numerous lawsuits on identical issues in the hopes of reaching a different outcome can only be described as frivolous and duplicative if not, arguably, harassing and abusive. Hansmeier’s litigiousness has drained resources not only from this district, but the District of Columbia and the Western District of Wisconsin. His actions have also required the Federal Defendants to dedicate time and resources in defending against meritless lawsuits again and again.

And here are the do’s and do not do’s of future Hansmeier federal court skylarking:

To regulate this district’s docket, promote judicial efficiency, and deter frivolous filings by Hansmeier, the Court will place appropriately tailored filing restrictions on him. In the event that Hansmeier initiates in the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota without express prior written permission from the Chief Judge of the District of Minnesota any copyright infringement action or private enforcement action under the ADA against the U.S. Attorney General, former Acting U.S. Attorney Folk, any future United States Attorney for the District of Minnesota, Assistant U.S. Attorney MacLaughlin, former U.S. Attorney Luger, or the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Minnesota, the Clerk is directed to immediately close the case and the Court will dismiss it without prejudice. Furthermore, any action removed to the District of Minnesota that meets the description above is also subject to immediate closure by the Clerk and dismissal without prejudice by the Court.

Time to find a hobby, Mr. Hansmeier. Weightlifting seems pretty popular in federal prisons. Maybe give that a shot. If nothing else, you’ll be able to impress future disappointed clients with your Iggy Pop-esque physique. Or maybe just spend this time thinking about the wrongs you’ve done and find some way to be a better person upon your release.

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Companies: prenda, prenda law

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Comments on “Court Tells Convicted Fraudster Paul Hansmeier To Stop Wasting The Court’s Time With Frivolous Litigation”

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That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

I thought his greatest trick was the letter from his sister saying what a great guy he was and how he had given her, her first job & taught her well.

The Academy was a “school” that defrauded clients, funny how his sister is named directly in several of the complaints about the scam.

All we need now is Gibbs wandering around carrying a log, and Lutz talking about the pie in the cafe while we wait for the answer…
Who is Salt Marsh…

This comment has been deemed funny by the community.
That One Guy (profile) says:


‘Your Honor as my client eloquently argued in his legal brief that I am presenting for him attempting to prevent him from filing lawsuits on the technicality of ‘literally being a decomposing corpse’ is a severe violation of his rights, and one that he and I take very seriously.’

Samuel Abram (profile) says:


In May 2020, Hansmeier sued former Attorney General Bill Barr, alleging the statutes used to shutdown his bogus (and fraudulent!) copyright lawsuits were unconstitutional. This was followed by another lawsuit against Bill Barr, filed (for some reason) in Wisconsin. He also sued US Attorney Erica MacDonald in Wisconsin, alleging the unconstitutionality of laws used to block his ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) lawsuits.

Hansmeier is such a litigious dick (but I repeat myself) that I’m starting to feel sympathetic towards Bill Barr. That is incredibly hard to do.

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Someone want to focus for a moment that he has abandoned his copyright?
He had his agent make it freely available online.
(Sorry no fucking way I am going to the site to look for the clip)
Unless the description says this is copyrighted don’t download it, there is no way for a downloader to know it is copyrighted until obtaining it (and even then much porn has no copyright info in the clips).
So that can be innocent infringement.
(Yes Virginia there is a ton of free porn meant to be shared online)
Of course the reason he uses porn is the stigma in this society against people who watch porn.
(Have you seen the stats of Utah?? My god, just admit you jack it already dudes.)
So he can scare them into small payments to protect their reputation.
Imma give you a protip… If he has a penis, he has touched himself while watching or imaginging sexytime things… stop pretending its wrong or shocking.
(Ladies if you stop making them feel bad about it, they might learn where the gspot is and then its win win!!)

Hans is a dumbass.

If I cared, I really don’t, I would see if the wife is still trying to keep the ADA mill running with the usual suspect who tries to go into places he never wanted to go to until he noted the threshold might be to high for his wheelchair & a payday is coming. Last I knew a buncha cash evaporated from the ADA scheme… anyone checked the shoe boxes in her closet?

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