United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Fort Worth Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
T. PITTMAN, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the Court is Defendant Tomas Trujillo’s
(“Defendant”) Motion to Dismiss for Lack of
Personal Jurisdiction and Improper Venue and in the Alternate
to Transfer Venue (ECF No. 8), and Plaintiff Peppers
Unlimited, Inc.’s (“Plaintiff”) Response
(ECF No. 11). Having considered the motion, related briefing,
and applicable law, the Court finds that Defendant’s
Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Personal Jurisdiction and
Improper Venue and in the Alternate to Transfer Venue (ECF
No. 8) should be and is hereby DENIED.
is a Texas-based corporation organized and existing under the
laws of the State of Texas with its principal place of
business located in Grand Prairie, Texas. Pl.’s Compl.
at 2, ECF No. 1. Plaintiff imports and distributes canned
food products. Pl.’s Br. Opp. MTD 2, ECF No. 12.
Defendant is an individual citizen of California doing
business as Carmelitas Original Salsas with its principal
place of business in San Martin, California. Compl. at
2. Defendant contacted Plaintiff in late 2015 to
inquire about purchasing jalapeños, tomatillos, and
other products. Id.
February 2016 to May 2016, Defendant sent Plaintiff several
orders for products. Id. at 3. The parties’
agreement stated that the products would be shipped from
Mexico to Plaintiff in Laredo, Texas, where they would be
inspected by the FDA. Following release by the FDA and
payment by the Defendant, Defendant would take possession of
the products. Id. Pursuant to the agreement,
Plaintiff shipped the products to Laredo, Defendant wired
payments to Plaintiff’s bank, Pegasus Bank in Dallas,
Texas, and the products were subsequently released to
2016, Defendant submitted five orders for products totaling
at least $83, 160.00 from Plaintiff. Id. Plaintiff
shipped the products to Laredo, Texas, but Defendant refused
to pick up or pay for the products. As a result, Plaintiff
incurred additional costs for storage and transportation of
the products to its principal place of business in Grand
Prairie, Texas. Id. Defendant also rejected products
he received several months prior, forcing Plaintiff to buy
those products back from Defendant and ship them to Grand
Prairie. Id. Plaintiff seeks to recover losses
associated with these alleged breaches of contract by
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(2) allows for dismissal of an
action where the Court lacks personal jurisdiction over the
defendant. On a motion to dismiss for lack of personal
jurisdiction, the plaintiff bears the burden of proving that
a nonresident defendant is subject to the Court’s
jurisdiction. Jones v. Petty-Ray Geophysical, Geosource,
Inc., 954 F.2d 1061, 1067 (5th Cir. 1992). “The
Court may determine the jurisdictional issue by receiving
affidavits, interrogatories, depositions, oral testimony, or
any combination of the recognized methods of
discovery.” Stuart v. Spademan, 772 F.2d 1185,
1192 (5th Cir. 1985). All conflicts between the facts
contained in the parties’ affidavits and other
documentation must be resolved in the plaintiff’s
favor. Cent. Freight Lines, Inc. v. APA Transp.
Corp., 322 F.3d 376, 380 (5th Cir. 2003).
establishing personal jurisdiction, two conditions must be
met: (1) the nonresident must be amenable to service of
process under Texas’ long-arm statute; and (2) the
assertion of jurisdiction over the nonresident must comport
with the Due Process Clause of the United States
Constitution. Jones, 954 F.2d at 1067. Because
Texas’s long-arm statute has been held to extend to the
limits of due process, the Court need only determine whether
jurisdiction over the defendant is constitutionally
permissible. Id. at 1067–68 (citing
Schlobohm v. Schapiro, 784 S.W.2d 355, 357 (Tex.
1990)). To meet the federal constitutional test of due
process, two elements must be satisfied: (1) the defendant
must have purposefully availed itself of the benefits and
protections of the forum state by establishing “minimum
contacts” with that state such that it would reasonably
anticipate being haled into court there; and (2) the exercise
of jurisdiction over the defendant must not offend
traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice.
Id. at 1068 (citing World– Wide Volkswagen
Corp. v. Woodson, 444 U.S. 286 (1980); Hanson v.
Denckla, 357 U.S. 235 (1958); International Shoe Co.
v. Washington, 326 U.S. 310 (1945)).
“minimum contacts” test can be met by contacts
giving rise to either specific or general jurisdiction.
Gundle Lining Constr. Corp. v. Adams Cnty. Asphalt,
Inc., 85 F.3d 201, 205 (5th Cir. 1996). “General
personal jurisdiction is found when the nonresident
defendant’s contacts with the forum state, even if
unrelated to the cause of action, are continuous, systematic,
and substantial.” Marathon Oil Co. v. Ruhrgas,
182 F.3d 291, 295 (5th Cir. 1999) (citation omitted).
Specific jurisdiction exists when the cause of action arises
from the nonresident defendant’s contacts with the
forum state. Gundle, 85 F.3d at 205. In either
context, the court considers the totality of the
circumstances in conducting the minimum contacts analysis; no
single factor is determinative. Stuart, 772 F.2d at
is proper in “a judicial district in which any
defendant resides, if all defendants are residents of the
State in which the district is located” or “a
judicial district in which a substantial part of the events
or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred.” 28
U.S.C. § 1391(b). If venue is laid in the wrong division
or district, the district court shall either dismiss or
transfer the case to any district or division in which the
action could have been brought. 28 U.S.C. § 1406(a). In
a motion to dismiss under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
12(b)(3) for improper venue, the court must view all facts in
a light most favorable to the plaintiff. Ambraco, Inc. v.
Bossclip B.V., 570 F.3d 233, 237–38 (5th Cir.
2009). The court may look to the facts in the complaint and
affidavits or any other evidence submitted by the non-moving
party to inform its decision in a Rule 12(b)(3) motion to
dismiss or transfer. Id. at 238 (citing Murphy
v. Schneider Nat’l Inc., 362 F.3d 1133,
1138–40 (9th Cir. 2004)).