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United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
August 2, 2021, Filed
[*332] James C. Ho, Circuit Judge:
"The Founders recognized that the protection of private property is indispensable to the promotion of individual freedom. As John Adams tersely put it, '[p]roperty must be secured, or liberty cannot exist.'" Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid, [*333] 141 S. Ct. 2063, 2071, 210 L. Ed. 2d 369 (2021) (quoting Discourses on Davila, in 6 Works of John Adams 280 (C. Adams ed. 1851)). Channeling that spirit, Congress responded to [**2] Fidel Castro's widespread confiscation of property in Cuba by enacting the Helms-Burton Act into law in 1996. See 22 U.S.C. § 6021 et seq. The Act allows any United States national with a claim to property confiscated by the Cuban Government to sue any person who traffics in such property. Id. § 6082(a)(1)(A).
In that same spirit, we disagree with the district court's decision to dismiss Robert Glen's claim under the Act for lack of standing. We side instead with courts that have held that ] "the legally cognizable right provided by the Helms-Burton Act to the 'rightful owners' of properties" confiscated by Castro "allows [those property owners] to assert a concrete injury based on Defendants' alleged 'trafficking' in the [those] [p]roperties." Glen v. Trip Advisor LLC, 529 F. Supp. 3d 316, 2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61156, 2021 WL 1200577, at *6 (D. Del. Mar. 30, 2021). See also Havana Docks Corp. v. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, Ltd., 484 F. Supp. 3d 1215, 1227-27 (S.D. Fla. 2020) (same).
But Glen's claim ultimately fails on the merits because it does not satisfy certain statutory requirements under the Act. ] If the property giving rise to suit was confiscated before March 12, 1996, a United States national may not bring an action under the Act unless he acquired ownership of the claim before March 12, 1996. 22 U.S.C. § 6082(a)(4)(B). We agree with the district court's alternative conclusion that this time limit is fatal to this suit, because the property in which Glen claims [**3] an ownership interest was confiscated before 1996—yet he did not inherit his claim to that property until after 1996.
Full case includes Shepard's, Headnotes, Legal Analytics from Lex Machina, and more.
7 F.4th 331 *; 2021 U.S. App. LEXIS 22847 **
ROBERT M. GLEN, Plaintiff—Appellant, versus AMERICAN AIRLINES, INCORPORATED, Defendant—Appellee.
Subsequent History: US Supreme Court certiorari denied by Glen v. Am. Airlines, Inc., 2022 U.S. LEXIS 549 (U.S., Jan. 18, 2022)
Prior History: [**1] Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas. USDC No. 4:20-CV-482.
Glen v. Am. Airlines, Inc., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 138148, 2020 WL 4464665 (N.D. Tex., Aug. 3, 2020)
properties, confiscated, inherited, ownership, Helms-Burton Act, acquires, confiscated property, trafficking, concrete, hotels, alleges, merits, unjust enrichment, traceable, bring an action
International Law, Individuals & Sovereign States, Civil Procedure, Appeals, Standards of Review, De Novo Review, Constitutional Law, Case or Controversy, Standing, Elements, Justiciability, Injury in Fact, Substantive Due Process, Scope, Dispute Resolution, Act of State Doctrine, Governments, Legislation, Interpretation