Ex-Subway pitchman Jared Fogle's pricey team of lawyers couldn't get him out of sex and child pornography convictions; neither, it seems, could Jared Fogle. The federal prison inmate learned on Wednesday that his effort to get those convictions overturned—via a Nov. 6 motion he filed "pro se," meaning he was representing himself—failed, and how. Judge Tanya Walton Pratt of the US District Court for the Southern District of Indiana didn't mince words in rejecting the "frivolous" claim in a two-page ruling. It's a bit circuitous, but here's what he attempted: The Indianapolis Star reports that he tried to claim the federal court that he pleaded guilty in didn't actually have the authority to render a judgment against him.
In an attempt to bolster his argument, he cited a "friend of the court brief" filed a couple of months ago by Frank Edwin Pate, a fellow inmate at the Englewood Federal Correctional Institution in Littleton, Colo. As Courthouse News explains, Pate's motion claimed the court didn't have that authority because Fogle is a "sovereign citizen," meaning free from any government's laws. In his 22-page motion, Pate argued the federal court took "control of (Fogle's) liberty illegally" and requests that the court offer proof of its jurisdiction or dismiss the charges. Pratt's response to Fogle: "Federal courts have subject matter and personal jurisdiction over defendants brought before them on federal indictments alleging violations of federal law." She characterizes the "sovereign citizen defense" as "shop worn" and having "no conceivable validity in American law." (Fogle has been attacked while in prison.)