Fidelitad, Inc., a Washington corporation, Plaintiff-Counter-Defendant-Appellant,
Insitu, Inc., a Washington corporation, Defendant-Counter-Claimant-Appellee.
and Submitted May 15, 2018 Seattle, Washington
from the United States District Court for the Eastern
District of Washington D.C. No. 2:13-cv-03128-TOR Thomas O.
Rice, Chief Judge, Presiding
R. Frost Lemmel (argued) and Kenneth W. Masters, Masters Law
Group P.L.L.C., Bainbridge Island, Washington; Mark G.
Jackson, Jackson Rosenfield LLP, Seattle, Washington; for
B. Wolff (argued) and Steve Y. Koh, Perkins Coie LLP,
Seattle, Washington, for Defendant-Counter-Claimant-Appellee.
Before: Marsha S. Berzon, Stephanie Dawn Thacker, [*] and Andrew D.
Hurwitz, Circuit Judges.
the district court's judgment in favor of the defendant
on state law claims, the panel held that the district court
erred in denying the plaintiff's motion to remand the
case to the state court from which it had been removed.
defendant designed and manufactured drones that it sold to
military and civilian customers. The plaintiff, a value-added
reseller of defendant's drones in Latin America, alleged
that the defendant improperly delayed shipment of its orders,
wrongfully terminated a purported distributorship agreement,
and then moved into the Latin American market, appropriating
the plaintiff's prior groundwork.
defendant removed the action based on 28 U.S.C. §
1442(a)(1), which allows removal of a civil action against a
federal officer or any person acting under that officer. The
panel held that the plaintiff's remand motion should have
been granted because the defendant was not acting
"pursuant to a federal officer's directions" in
undertaking the actions that were the subject of the
plaintiff's complaint. No federal officer directed the
defendant to delay the plaintiff's orders or cease doing
business with the plaintiff. The panel held that complying
with the International Traffic in Arms Regulations, governing
the sale of military goods to foreign governments, did not
bring the defendant within the scope of the federal officer
removal statute. The defendant also was not entitled to
removal as a federal contractor.
panel reversed the district court's judgment and remanded
with instructions to remand the action to state court.
HURWITZ, CIRCUIT JUDGE.
Inc. designs and manufactures unmanned aerial
systems-commonly known as "drones"-that it sells to
military and civilian customers. Fidelitad, Inc. is a
value-added reseller of Insitu's drones in Latin America.
In this action, Fidelitad claims that Insitu improperly
delayed shipment of its orders, wrongfully terminated a
purported distributorship agreement, and then moved into the
Latin American market, appropriating Fidelitad's prior
filed its original complaint in Washington state court.
Insitu removed the action to the United States District Court
for the Eastern District of Washington, invoking 28 U.S.C.
§ 1442(a)(1), which allows removal of civil actions
against "any officer (or any person acting under that
officer) of the United States." The district court
denied Fidelitad's motion to remand and later granted
summary judgment to Insitu. We hold that the ...