Practice Note: Don’t Send Drugs to the Federal Circuit

In Schirripa v. US, the Federal Circuit recently issued an interesting order:

Appellant Jeffrey Nathan Schirripa submitted to the court 18 copies of his confidential petition for panel rehearing and rehearing en banc. Upon examination, Appellant affixed to each petition what appear to be samples of cannabinoids, which may be controlled substances possessed or mailed in violation of federal law.


The Clerk of Court is directed to transmit these 18 documents to the U.S. Marshals Service for appropriate disposition or alternate action within the purview of the U.S. Department of Justice.

[SchirripaOrder] In the underlying case, Schirripa asked the Court of Federal Claims to enjoin the US Government from enforcing the Controlled Substances Act against his actions.  The court dismissed that case and the dismissal was affirmed on appeal.  Good luck Mr. Schirripa, and don’t tip the judges.

The cannabis attachment was apparently intended to create subject matter jurisdiction in the case.  I don’t fully understand the Schirripa’s flow chart, but it appears to be a boot-strap version a catch-22 for the court — the type of argument that you might figure out while high.

Read the en banc brief. [SchirripaEnBancBrief]

19 thoughts on “Practice Note: Don’t Send Drugs to the Federal Circuit

  1. 8

    In other News re Another Bad Day for Silly Con Valley Bros:

    Facebook Inc. knew of problems in how it measured viewership of video ads on its platform for more than a year before it disclosed them in 2016, according to a complaint filed Tuesday by advertisers.

    A group of small advertisers filed a lawsuit in California federal court in 2016, alleging the tech giant engaged in unfair business conduct by disseminating inaccurate metrics that significantly overestimated the amount of time users were spending watching video ads.

    The plaintiffs later added a fraud claim, and in Tuesday’s court filing they alleged Facebook knew of irregularities in its video metrics by January 2015 and understood the nature of the miscalculation within a few months, but failed to disclose the information for over a year….

    “Facebook’s internal efforts behind the scenes reflect a company mentality of reckless indifference toward the accuracy of its metrics,” the plaintiffs said in Tuesday’s filing

    Brought to you by the same people who insist on the awesomeness of patents (LOL) on shove-another-ad-in-your-face “technology”. Wasn’t awesome, wasn’t technology. Cook the numbers, create “value” where there isn’t any, pass the con on to the investor class, make life cr@ ppier for everyone else while destroying jobs for people who can write and creating jobs for bros whose idea of journalism is looping a security cam to the sound of a lame late 80s industrial punk CD.

    1. 8.1

      Cue up the know-nothings who will proclaim that the “metrics” would be better if only we had more patents on methods of sorting Bizarre Animal Friendship videos according to “dwell time.”

      They’ll do it dynamically! Using machine learning! They’ll create a matrix!

      So000000000000per techn0000000000!

    1. 7.2

      Old Mal: “I won’t give up this steering wheel until you pry it from my cold dead hands! … And get off my lawn!”

      1. 7.2.1

        (minor correction):

        “I won’t give up this steering wheel until you pry it from my cold dead hand! … And get off my lawn!”

        (hand corrected to be in the singular, as the other hand is still clenching tight on his buggy whip)


          (hand corrected to be in the singular, as the other hand is still clenching tight on his buggy whip)

          Yakov Smirnof called. He said to keep going because you make him seem funnier which has never happened before.

  2. 6

    A friend of mine was an examiner many years ago in the PTO unit that handled animal trap patent applications. Said the worst part of his job was getting samples in the mail from folks demonstrating how effective their mousetraps were, containing the by now considerably long dead mouse.

  3. 5

    Now I’m really confused. What happens if there’s a gold fringe on your cannabis flag?

  4. 4

    Do the rules anything about sending drugs? If not, they should be amended to make this clear.

  5. 3

    I don’t fully understand the Schirripa’s flow chart…

    Yeah, you are not the only one. I think that you are right. The “logic” of this brief might make more sense to one whose faculties were first clouded by substance abuse.

    1. 3.2

      The flow-chart specifically references and fundamentally relies on the information set forth in the “Memorandum in Support of Rehearing En Banc” (filed under seal). It was not intended to make sense to anyone who was not given authorized access to the Memorandum… Just saying.

  6. 2

    Speaking of being high on drugs, over on the thread BGuy writes:

    over 100 people die every day on U.S. roads.

    as an “argument” for the safety of the massive fleet of robot cars that are going to pick up kids during rush hour and drop them off in front of schools in San Francisco and New York City next year (in BGuy’s vivid imagination).

    You would think that a s00per d00per serious “tech guy” like Mr.B would understand a little bit about statistics but apparently not. Mr.B will surely be along soon to tell everyone that jumping off of ten story buildings is safer than driving because, hey, nobody died from jumping off a ten story building today but a bunch of drivers did.

    1. 2.3

      If you would like some more statistics about your irrational fear of self-driving cars, Waymo is logging 1 million miles per month or more with its self-driving fleet. In May, it was reported that Waymo has over 8 million miles of real world fleet driving (besides billions of miles of simulated testing). That would give Waymo at least 12 million miles of driving by now. So far, Waymo has no fatalities. All accidents involving a Waymo vehicle have been the fault of the other human driver.

      Currently, the rate of traffic deaths in the U.S. is 1.18 deaths per 1,000,000 vehicles miles traveled. If Waymo had a fatal accident rate the same as humans, we would have expected to see 14-15 deaths by now in Waymo vehicles. Sure the sample size is not as large as the population at large, but it looks pretty good. But what do I know about statistics. Let’s keep the status quo with the current fatality rate…

  7. 1

    I just looked up 50 USC § 212: “Confiscation of property employed to aid insurrection.” The appellant appears to be arguing here that if it’s not unlaw to ship cannabis, then proving that it’s not unlawful amounts to an “insurrection against the Government of the United States.”

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