Fifth Circuit Rejects Border-Fence Appeal

     NEW ORLEANS (CN) – Owners of condemned property near the Mexican border failed to successfully challenge the federal government’s taking of their land in the 5th Circuit.

     The Department of Homeland Security is working under a Congressional directive to build new border fences by the end of the year. One of the target areas is the Rio Grande Valley in Texas.
     Pamela Rivas and Hilario and Baldomera Muniz sued when the government condemned their properties. The appellate judges ruled, per curiam, that they lack jurisdiction to hear the case.
     The district court had ruled that the government made a bona fide effort to negotiate with the landowners. The amount of compensation has not yet been determined, so the case is not yet appealable.

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