United States

United States

Ralls cites failed terror rulings in Obama challenge

UNITED STATES: Supreme Court rulings against the federal government over alleged terror organisations are being used by Chinese-owned Ralls Corporation as it seeks to save its lawsuit against President Barack Obama.

The projects would have used Sany's 2MW turbine
The projects would have used Sany's 2MW turbine

Ralls Corp, owned by China's Sany Electric, is suing Obama and the US government for its blocking of Ralls' ownership of four 10MW windfarms in Oregon on the grounds of national security. The projects are located near a US naval base.

In February federal judge Amy Jackson upheld Obama's right to block Ralls' ownership of the four wind farms. However, she said the US government should explain its reasoning behind the decision.

Ralls appealed against the judgement, complaining that the government had failed to explain its actions and give Ralls due process (i.e. respect its legal rights).

The Obama administration has sought to dismiss this appeal, which prompted Ralls to file a further response in the courts yesterday. In this latest document, Ralls provides further evidence that, it says, illustrates the government's failure to give due process.

In particular, the document cites a number of cases where individuals or organisations have been arrested or shut down by the State Department on the grounds that they are terrorists. These rulings have been subsequently quashed by the Supreme Court due to the government's refusal to explain its actions and share any evidence with the court and with the suspects.

"The Supreme Court has affirmed that the essence of due process is the requirement that individuals be given notice and an opportunity to be heard, at a meaningful time and in a meaningful manner, before the government deprives them of property or liberty," says the Ralls document filed yesterday.

"National security concerns may affect what process is due, but they neither eliminate the core requirement nor grant the government a blank check. That is why even designated terrorists have the right to notice and an opportunity to be heard. For instance, in National Council of Resistance of Iran v. Department of State, the court invalidated the Secretary of State's decision to designate a group as a foreign terrorist organisation (FTO). The court invoked "the fundamental norm of due process jurisprudence" that a party must receive "notice and hearing" before the government deprives it of property, and held that due process was violated where the group was not told that the designation was impending, was not able to see the evidence against it, and had no opportunity to rebut the government's concerns".

Ralls insists that in its own case, it has been denied the due process it deserves as a property owner in the US.

Tim Tingkang Xia, counsel for Ralls Corporation, said: "The federal government took Ralls' wind-farm project without due process of law. It denied Ralls' right to develop a state-approved project without even explaining why. This is a clear and complete violation of the constitutional right to due process."

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