Obstruction of Justice


 “When judges sacrifice the rule of law to find rights they favor, I fear the people may one day find that their new rights, once proclaimed so boldly, have disappeared because there is no longer a rule of law to protect them.”[1]


This legal proceeding represents a critical chapter in the aftermath of one of the most egregious periods ever witnessed in modern-day history, wherein the sanctity of residential housing was violated, causing immeasurable harm to millions of diligent American citizens and families.

At the heart of this matter is Joanna Burke, an octogenarian widow, who, spurred by an unwavering commitment to justice, brings forth this civil action.

Her aim is to thwart the audacious and fraudulent attempt by a coalition of actors including the United States Government, the Judiciary, Banking institutions, and unscrupulous legal debt collectors, who, reprehensibly, persist in collusion even a decade and a half after the seismic 2008 financial crisis.

In an unsettling parallel to scavengers, these entities exhibit behavior akin to vultures, aiming to expedite the demise of the last remaining mortgagor.

Their ultimate objective, achieved through insidious means of fraud, unrelenting harassment, emotional trauma, and mental anguish, is to wrest control of valuable real property.

This tale is anchored in a financial turmoil that was ignited by the inexplicable sale of Bear Stearns to JPMorgan Chase at a paltry $2 per share in March 2008, mere weeks after the bank’s valuation had soared to a staggering $172 per share.

The collapse of this once-mighty institution stands as a testament to the avarice that permeated both the financial services sector and the government entities responsible for overseeing mortgage issuance and servicing.

Their reckless handling of mortgages and loans set the stage for an unprecedented wave of fraudulent activity, famously known as the era of ‘liar loans’.

These toxic loans were approved and bundled by lenders, only to be offloaded onto unsuspecting investors. In this system, rife with loopholes, predatory lending thrived, facilitated by exorbitant broker commissions and banker bonuses.

This insatiable greed propelled a disturbing reliance on deceitful lending and underwriting practices.

It is an undisputed fact that Joanna Burke meticulously selected this particular District and Circuit due to their involvement in the RFC litigation.

These previous proceedings centered around ‘liar loans’ and ‘lender application fraud’, a context that resonates with the Plaintiff’s own experience of a forged addition of an altered income to her HELOC loan, a fraudulent and criminal act perpetrated solely by the lender and staff.

However, it is the fraud which has been perpetrated at the hands of the legal profession, including the judicial machinery itself, which has kept the flames of injustice and fraudulence burning for over a decade and a half.

In light of these circumstances, the significance of Joanna Burke’s pursuit of justice cannot be overstated.

Her determination to hold accountable those who have orchestrated the ongoing degradation of our financial and legal systems stands as a beacon of hope for countless others affected by this tumultuous chapter in American history.

Indeed, as the reverberations of this deeply troubling saga continue to unfold, it underscores the relentless pursuit of finding at least one court, or a majority of circuit judges who are honest jurists who value morality and lawfulness over power, corruption, and greed.

A stark reminder of the ongoing consequences materialized as recently as Monday, August 14, 2023. On this consequential day, a new chapter of litigation bore witness to a striking jury judgment, delivering a resounding blow to the government.

This judgment, emblematic of a broader pattern of illegal property expropriation stemming from the cataclysmic Great Recession, unfolded.

A vivid headline on Law360 heralded the news:

“Historic Verdict: Jury Holds U.S. Federal Housing Finance Agency Liable, Awards Shareholders $612.4 Million”.[2] This Washington, D.C. federal jury, in a bold and unequivocal stance, pronounced that the U.S. Federal Housing Finance Agency had transgressed by tampering with stock purchase agreements linked to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in 2012.

This manipulation enabled the U.S. Treasury to unjustly siphon the net profits of these entities. The verdict not only rectified the past, but also echoed a demand for accountability, as reflected in the substantial damages granted – an eye-watering $612.4 million – awarded in favor of the shareholders who had suffered the consequences of this illicit maneuver.

On the same day, another landmark settlement was announced:

“UBS AG has agreed to pay more than $1.4 billion in civil penalties to settle a 2018 U.S. Department of Justice lawsuit accusing the bank of fraud in its pre-crisis sales of residential mortgage-backed securities, New York federal prosecutors said Monday.”.

This fraud, exposed and pursued by the United States government, emerges more than a decade after the largest theft of residential homes in American history.

The apparent allegations give rise to serious questions about expired statute of limitations and the delayed prosecution, allowing millions of citizens’ homes to be plundered and their families’ lives and hopes extinguished.

Amidst this complex web of legal challenges, the Plaintiff stands out as one of the citizens who has relentlessly fought for similar restitution and to retain her homestead.

It is reasonable to assert that, given the acknowledged toxic and predatory lending stemming from fraud related to residential mortgage-backed securities, and where investors and shareholders are securing financial recovery, an actual victim should be entitled to the same legal verdict.  

The indefatigable Joanna Burke’s relentless pursuit of justice is palpable. Despite twice prevailing over the straw-man entity known as Deutsche Bank [National Trust Company], a colossal institution, the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (CA5) contravened the tide of legal precedent which has spanned over two centuries.

This contravention, a testament to the gravity of the stakes involved, underscores the lengths to which the pursuit of truth and justice can be thwarted, even in the face of long-standing and binding legal principles.

In this poignant context, Joanna Burke, unyielding and pro se, steps forward, submitting this Motion to Take Judicial Notice.

This motion, a manifestation of her unwavering resolve, is a cornerstone in the edifice of her quest for justice. Grounded in cogent reasons presented herein, the Plaintiff asserts that this motion holds relevance to the ongoing proceedings, beseeching its honorable consideration and granting.

In this endeavor, the pursuit of truth and justice remains an unflagging beacon, undeterred by the vicissitudes of time and the complexities of legal interpretation.


Plaintiff respectfully requests the court take judicial notice[3] of the following public court records in the matter of United States v. Dornsbach, 0:22-cr-00048 (D. Minn. May 17, 2023) (“Dornsbach”).

In particular, the filings relevant to the failed attempt to quash the witness testimony of lawyer turned Magistrate Judge, Dolce Foster (“MJF”), along with the post-trial jury minutes, as combined and presented in Exhibit “Lawyer Turned Judge as a Witness for Defendant in Minnesota Federal Court Criminal Proceeding”.

The defendant would be found not guilty and acquitted of all charges.


This judicial notice bears direct relevance to the ongoing proceedings at hand, referred to as the “JudgeGate Scandal”[4], serving as an irrefutable affirmation of the Plaintiff’s controversial but truthful assertions concerning the Texas Federal Judiciary.

It elucidates not only the imperative nature of initiating the case in Minnesota but also underscores the legal correctness of this course of action.

ClerkGate: Improper Refusal by CA5 Judges in a Complaint Directed at the Circuit Court and Judicial Machinery Itself

Of particular significance is the recent “ClerkGate Scandal”[5] involving the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (“CA5”), wherein their denial to transfer the Plaintiff’s appeal to the Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit (“CA8”) gains prominence.

This decision was anchored in the provisions of 28 U.S. Code § 1631, which permits the transfer of cases from a federal court devoid of jurisdiction to another federal court where the case could have been properly adjudicated, with due consideration in the “interest of justice.”

Particularly pertinent to the present context is the essence of the Plaintiff’s “ClerkGate” complaint, which is centered around the conduct of the CA5 judges themselves, in addition to the actions undertaken by Christina Clark, the case clerk, and her co-conspirators (clerks).

Notwithstanding the profound gravity of the allegations outlined within the complaint submitted to the District Court, it is a lamentable fact that the Plaintiff’s assertions were met with dismissal, a decision reached while her husband’s life hung in the balance on a hospital bed.

Struggling through an abyss of grief as her husband’s ultimate death on Sunday, September 4, 2022, controlled her every thought and emotion, the Plaintiff valiantly contested the issued Orders, subsequently pursuing an appeal against the district court’s final void Order, as Texas District Judge Bennett’s acts were performed in the clear absence of all jurisdiction.

See; Drake v. Liberty Mutual Automotive Insurance Company, No. 5:06CV24, at *3-4 (E.D. Tex. Apr. 21, 2006).

In a determined effort to secure an environment conducive to fairness and impartiality, the Plaintiff submitted a motion to CA5 advocating for a transfer of venue, a step driven by the understanding that the pursuit of a just resolution would forever remain elusive within the confines of Texas.

Tragically, this plea for a transfer was met with premature denial by the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (“CA5”), a brazen response that adds to the layers of adversity faced by the Plaintiff.

A Circuit Split Shakes the Judiciary and Legal System: All Minnesota Judges Disqualify After Lawyer-Magistrate’s ‘Anticipated’ Testimony

Contrary to Texas, this District Court disqualified all judges from participating in the Dornsbach proceeding before this court due to the anticipated witness testimony by Magistrate Judge Dolce Foster (“MJF”).

CA8 assigned North Dakota Judge Daniel Traynor to preside over the case. His role involves deciding on pleadings involving MJF as well as presiding over the trial, including Magistrate Judge Dolce Foster’s witness-testimony.  

The plaintiff does not dispute that Judge Traynor has been correctly assigned to preside by order of the Chief Judge of CA8. See 28 U.S.C. § 292(b).

Consequently, Judge Traynor, although deemed a visitor (as this court retains jurisdiction over the proceedings) possesses the full panoply of judicial powers needed for adjudication of the litigation.

However, Plaintiff asserts it is the reason[s] for the disqualification of all judges which is important to recognize, and the CA8 Order clearly states why:

“in my judgment the public interest so requires”.

Whilst the CA8 Order does not directly expand on this statement, the Chief Judge of this District Court, Patrick Shiltz does.  In his Disqualification Order he states that because the case involves MJF as a potential trial witness,  disqualification is mandatory. This is so, he writes, “based on the files, records and proceedings [herein]”.

Plaintiff’s research has determined that in a judicial order, the phrase “the public interest requires so” typically means that the decision or action being taken by the court is deemed necessary or appropriate for the well-being, safety, or overall benefit of the general public.

It suggests that the court believes that its decision is not only in line with legal principles but also aligns with what would best serve the broader interests of society.

When a court refers to the “public interest” in its order, it considers factors such as societal welfare, public safety, protection of individual rights, and the common good.

The court may weigh these considerations against other competing interests to arrive at a decision that it believes will have a positive impact on the public as a whole. In essence, this phrase reflects the court’s perspective that its decision isn’t solely about the parties involved in the case but extends to the broader societal implications and consequences of its ruling.

In conclusion, in a legal setting this District and Circuit’s judiciary decided that due to “public interest”, it was necessary to disqualify all judges in the interest of justice.

The Texas Federal Judiciary is Acting Beyond All Legal Boundaries

Returning to CA5, an appellate court does have unique legal considerations, including presenting a quorum in an appeal, see; Comer v. Murphy Oil USA, 607 F.3d 1049 (5th Cir. 2010). It can also reject motions seeking mass recusal or disqualification of judges by a litigant, see; Weber v. Garza, 570 F.2d 511, 512 n.1 (5th Cir. 1978).

 However, these examples were not relevant to Plaintiff’s appeal, as she ascribes the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit could not assert jurisdiction. CA5 lacked jurisdiction to consider any issues related to the prior judgment in this latest case on appeal, as detailed in JudgeGate and ClerkGate’s operative complaints.

Lawyer or Judge as a Witness

Judges Should Not Be Witnesses Claims Dolce Foster

As Dornsbach illuminates, prior to her current role as a Magistrate Judge, Dolce Foster practiced as a trial lawyer, which forms the crux of the issue at hand.   

The subpoena pertains to her previous capacity as counsel for the defendant in question. Perturbingly, her motion to quash the subpoena is replete with striking contentions, notably including the assertion that

“precedent discourages requiring federal judges from testifying…”.

Alas, her endeavor to quash the subpoena proved unsuccessful, as her legal arguments were ultimately dismissed by the out-of-state District Judge assigned to the case.

This outcome led to her transition from being a presiding judge to a “lawyer as a witness,” precipitating the subsequent disqualification of all District judges, considering her active sitting status.

The Inclusion of Hopkins Law Firm and Lawyers as Named Defendants

Within the context of the plaintiff’s case, the roster of defendants encompasses Mark and Shelley Hopkins, a husband-and-wife legal duo.

Notably, the two met during their tenure at the judicially sanctioned[6] foreclosure-centric law firm Barrett Daffin Frappin et al (“BDF”) in Texas, renowned for its involvement in foreclosure cases, creating fake documents, unlawful document backdating, robo-signing and other malfeasances.

Specifically, their engagement can be linked to the Deutsche Bank Nat’l Trust Co. v. Burke, 92 F. Supp. 3d 601, 605 (S.D. Tex. 2015) case.

A pivotal juncture emerged in 2015 when the plaintiff successfully thwarted Deutsche Bank’s alleged wrongful foreclosure in a bench trial, duly overseen by the Honorable Magistrate Judge Stephen Wm. Smith.

In that instance, the court’s determination resoundingly declared that Deutsche Bank lacked any valid claim to the Burkes’ note and security interest executed on May 21, 2007.

Subsequent to this favorable outcome, Mark Hopkins, acting in the capacity of an independent contractor for BDF, made an unsanctioned appearance without prior notice, authority, or a valid debt collector’s surety bond (as required by Tex. Fin. Code § 392.101).

His intention was to challenge the court’s verdict. Notably, Shelley Hopkins subsequently joined the fray, assuming a role within Mark Hopkins’ new venture, Hopkins Law, PLLC, where his ownership stake stood at 100%.

Collectively referred to as “BDF Hopkins,” these parties stand accused of orchestrating a series of reprehensible and illegal actions that flagrantly disregard legal and ethical standards.

Such actions include the unwarranted withholding of crucial mortgage-related documentation from the plaintiff, baseless accusations against the plaintiff involving threats against judges, the fraudulent acquisition of forgivable PPP loans under the pretext of being a ‘100% female owned’ business, and various other egregious misconduct unbefitting of officers of the court.

Distinct Application of the “Lawyer as a Witness” Principle in this Case

A matter of pivotal significance within the scope of the ongoing proceedings is the repeated identification of BDF Hopkins as named defendants by the plaintiff, a practice extending back to no later than 2018, encompassing the current case as well.

What remains intriguing, however, is the perplexing stance of the Texas federal judiciary, which, despite the evident conflict of interest and the plaintiff’s vocal objections, has permitted their continued representation of Ocwen Loan Servicing, LLC, now referred to as PHH Mortgage Corporation (“Ocwen PHH”). This persistence in allowing such representation disregards the palpable ethical complexities inherent to their ongoing involvement.

A pertinent point of reference lies in Texas Disciplinary Rule of Professional Conduct 3.08, aptly titled “Lawyer as Witness,” which broadly proscribes an attorney from simultaneously serving as both an advocate and a witness within the confines of a singular case.

Furthermore, legal precedence such asBalanicheva v. SMG, No. PC-2016-3137, at *21-22 (R.I. Super. Jan. 25, 2023), reinforces the implications of this principle.

In this context, it is notable that the Court of Appeals of Texas, in the case of In re Guidry,316 S.W.3d at 740-41, overturned a trial court’s ruling, disqualifying an attorney from dual roles and highlighting that permitting attorneys to inhabit the dual capacities of trial lawyer and fact witness generates tangible risks.

Such a situation can lead to the blurring of lines in jurors’ perceptions, potentially lending undue weight to an attorney’s counsel-based arguments due to their intimate familiarity with the facts presented, ultimately confusing whether statements originate from the counsel table or the witness stand.

In summation, it becomes evident that in Texas federal courts, a trend prevails where lawyers entrenched in the creditor rights foreclosure realm are granted the latitude to function as both advocates and witnesses, a practice that directly contradicts established legal mandates and the ethical standards expected of officers of the court.

However, a divergent sentiment becomes discernible upon close scrutiny of the documented pleadings and Orders within the Dornsbach case. This scrutiny affirms the unwavering position of this District and Circuit against the condonation of such dual roles within the legal arena.


The following cases are included in the Plaintiff’s Response to this Court’s Show Cause Order and judicial notice is requested here. The cases are listed for reference.

See; Guinn v. Davis, No. 7:20cv753, at *5 (W.D. Va. July 15, 2021); Barnes v. American Fertilizer Co., 144 Va. 692, 705, 130 S.E. 902, 906 (1925); Lops v. Lops, 140 F.3d 927, 952 (11th Cir. 1998); Palmer v. Bunn, 218 Ga. 244, 245 (Ga. 1962), and; In re Backer, No. 98-50956, at *10 (Bankr. E.D. Ky. Aug. 30, 2011).

 See, Exhibit “Legally Void Orders Can Be Challenged Anywhere”.


This judicial notice holds significance in the present proceedings, given that Magistrate Judge Dolce Foster, who was designated to oversee this case, issued a Show Cause Order which lacks merit.

It is evident that the comprehensive contextual information and undeniable facts, bolstered by relevant case law, as presented within the Plaintiff’s extensive 100-page complaint, were unilaterally disregarded.

This action constitutes a violation of the Plaintiff’s fundamental civil and legal rights to a neutral and equitable adjudicator and a just tribunal.

The Show Cause Order in question follows a standardized format and draws upon venue – specifically Section 1391(b) – in an attempt to expedite the dismissal of the case, or transfer back to Texas. This intention is confirmed on the second page of the Order.


This civil action is directed “at the judicial machinery itself”.

See Workman v. Bell, 484 F.3d 837, 840 n.1 (6th Cir. 2007):

“The elements of fraud on the court include conduct: 1) on the part of an officer of the court; 2) that is directed at the judicial machinery itself; 3) that is intentionally false, wilfully blind to the truth, or is in reckless disregard for the truth; 4) that is a positive averment or a concealment when one is under a duty to disclose; and 5) that deceives the court.”.

For now, let’s put aside Plaintiff’s original complaint, which is directed towards the judicial machinery itself as stated in the opening sentence, in part “to vacate void judgments on the basis of fraud”.  

See; Doc 1, p. 1 (Apr. 19, 2023).

In this court, two orders were recently issued by the judicial machinery which violate the rule of law, appear to be retaliatory, and lack legal merit.

These assertions are backed by irrefutable citations to controlling facts and authorities. It is important to note that Joanna Burke asserts her reservation of rights, including her civil and constitutional rights to due process, an impartial judge, and a fair hearing, as her property and liberty are at extreme risk.

See; Parker v. Parker, No. 4:07-CV-00074, at *5-6 (E.D. Mo. Mar. 13, 2008).


This case has apparently been referred to the undersigned United States Magistrate Judge pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636 and District of Minnesota Local Rule 72.1.

In light of the Magistrate Judge’s past and present performance from the bench, and as witnessed in these proceedings, the Plaintiff, Joanna Burke formally provides notice to this court that she objects to the assignment of Magistrate Judge Dolce Foster.


The representation put forth by the Texas judiciary seemingly advocates for a scenario in which a cluster of circuit judges assumes the roles of both adjudicator and arbiter, placing the aggrieved litigant in an untenable position where she must once again confront the same judges who previously defrauded her of her property, liberty and civil rights.

This approach reeks of obstruction of justice and the perilous sway of ochlocracy—an approach that finds no footing within a democratic society, but rather seems more appropriate for a jurisdiction marred by a Banana Republic-style governance.

A fitting parallel is drawn from the case of Perry Capital LLC v. Mnuchin, 864 F.3d 591, 648 (D.C. Cir. 2017), which aptly pronounces,

“What might serve in a banana republic will not do in a constitutional one.”

In the quest to prevent a grave miscarriage of justice, the Plaintiff earnestly implores this court grant due consideration to this motion and the facts presented.

The stakes are high, the principles at hand are essential, and the very fabric of justice hinges upon a decision that champions the integrity of the legal process.

In order to prevent a grave miscarriage of justice, the Plaintiff respectfully request this motion be GRANTED.

RESPECTFULLY submitted this 15th day of August, 2023.

[1] Log Cabin Republicans v. U.S., 658 F.3d 1162, 1174 (9th Cir. 2011).

[2] See; IN RE: FANNIE MAE/FREDDIE MAC SENIOR PREFERRED STOCK PURCHASE AGREEMENT CLASS ACTION LITIGATIONS (1:13-mc-01288) District Court, District of Columbia (“Minute Entry for Jury Trial held on 8/14/2023 before Judge Royce C. Lamberth: Jury deliberations resumed and concluded. Jury Verdict in favor of Plaintiffs against Defendants. Jury panel is discharged from any further consideration in this matter. Oral motion by Defendants’ to defer entering Judgment, heard and GRANTED. Court Reporter: Lisa Edwards. (smc)”)

[3] Davis v. Rardin, 23-CV-0651 (PJS/DJF), at *3 n.2 (D. Minn. May 9, 2023) (“The Court may take judicial notice of public court records. Stutzka v. McCarville, 420 F.3d 757, 760 n.2 (8th Cir. 2005).”).

[4] The Plaintiff shall refer to this lawsuit as “JudgeGate” as it pertains to claims against the judicial machinery itself.

[5] In ClerkGate, Texas Federal District Judge Bennett’s orders are void for the reasons provided by Plaintiff post judgment, pre-motions on appeal to CA5, and for the arguments presented herein in this new “JudgeGate” complaint.

[6] See; In re Allen, Case No: 06-60121 (Bankr. S.D. Tex. June 18, 2007).

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