917 F2d 27 Badea v. Bowman
917 F.2d 27
NOTICE: Ninth Circuit Rule 36-3 provides that dispositions other than opinions or orders designated for publication are not precedential and should not be cited except when relevant under the doctrines of law of the case, res judicata, or collateral estoppel.
John BADEA, Plaintiff-Appellant,
Loretta BOWMAN, et al., Defendants-Appellees.
United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit.
Submitted Oct. 23, 1990.*
Decided Oct. 25, 1990.
Before HUG, NELSON and LEAVY, Circuit Judges.
John Badea, a federal prisoner, appeals pro se the district court's sua sponte dismissal of his 42 U.S.C. Sec. 1983 complaint as frivolous under 28 U.S.C. Sec. 1915(d). Badea alleges that defendants Loretta Bowman, a Clark County District Court clerk, and Renee Silvaggio, a court reporter, conspired to deprive him of a copy of his trial transcript by failing to deliver a copy of the transcript despite an order from a Clark County judge directing that a copy be provided to him. He also alleges that Bowman refused to file motions that he submitted pro se. We have jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. Sec. 1291 and review de novo. Jackson v. Arizona, 885 F.2d 639, 640 (9th Cir.1989). We affirm.
Frivolous in forma pauperis complaints may be dismissed sua sponte under 28 U.S.C. Sec. 1915(d). Neitzke v. Williams, 109 S.Ct. 1827, 1831 (1989). A complaint is frivolous "where it lacks an arguable basis in law or in fact." Id. A district court must afford a pro se plaintiff notice of the deficiencies of the complaint and an opportunity to amend prior to dismissal unless it is absolutely clear that the deficiencies of the complaint cannot be cured. Noll v. Carlson, 809 F.2d 1446, 1448 (9th Cir.1987).
Court clerks and court reporters have absolute quasi-judicial immunity from suits requesting damages or injunctive relief "when they perform tasks that are an integral part of the judicial process." Mullis v. United States Bankruptcy Court, 828 F.2d 1385, 1390, 1394 (9th Cir.1987), cert. denied, 486 U.S. 1040 (1988) (court clerks); Stewart v. Minnick, 409 F.2d 826, 826 (9th Cir.1969) (per curiam) (court clerks and reporters). A mistake or act in excess of jurisdiction does not abrogate such immunity even if it results in " 'grave procedural errors.' " Mullis, 828 F.2d at 1390 (quoting Stump v. Sparkman, 435 U.S. 349, 359 (1978)). Allegations of bad faith, personal interest, outright malevolence, or conspiracy fail to pierce the cloak of immunity. McCarthy v. Mayo, 827 F.2d 1310, 1315 (9th Cir.1987).
Taking Badea's allegations as true, the actions of Bowman and Silvaggio are integral parts of the judicial process, and thus the district court properly determined that they were entitled to absolute quasi-judicial immunity. See Mullis, 828 F.2d at 1390; Stewart, 409 F.2d at 826.