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Release: June 6,
Federal Court Rules That Goldstein
Eminent Domain Case Belongs In Federal Court,
But Dismisses Case Anyway
Plaintiffs Optimistic That They Will Prevail on Appeal
BROOKLYN, NY -- The Federal District Court in Brooklyn today ruled in favor
of plaintiffs and rejected a prior court recommendation that the eminent
domain lawsuit, Goldstein
v. Pataki, belonged in state rather than federal court.
In that lawsuit, property owners and tenants in the footprint of the proposed
"Atlantic Yards" project challenge the use of eminent domain to seize
their homes and businesses to make way for the project, alleging that the takings
violate the U.S. Constitution. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis disagreed with
Magistrate Judge Robert Levy's February report
and recommendation by ruling that federal court is the proper legal forum
for the case. Judge Garaufis also ruled, however, that the plaintiffs' complaint
"We will appeal the ruling," said the lead attorney for the plaintiffs,
Matthew Brinckerhoff. "We are confident that the appellate court will allow
this case to proceed to trial, at which the citizens of New York will finally
learn the real reason plaintiffs' properties were selected to be forcibly
taken, and why Ratner was chosen to reap an unprecedented financial windfall."
Develop Don't Destroy Brooklyn organized the Goldstein v. Pataki plaintiffs
and lawsuit, and continues to raise the necessary funds for what is expected to
be a long and drawn out legal fight.
"We will continue to pursue every single legal option available to the plaintiffs,
wherever they lead us, to stop what we believe is a private taking in violation
of the U.S. Constitution," said DDDB legal team coordinator Candace Carponter.
Plaintiffs in the case are 13 residential and business owners and rent-stabilized
tenants located in the footprint of Forest City Ratner's "Atlantic Yards"
plan. Defendants in the case are former Governor Pataki, the Empire State Development
Corporation, Mayor Bloomberg and Forest City Ratner.
All legal briefs and decisions can be found at: http://www.dddb.net/php/reading/legal/eminentdomain
DON’T DESTROY BROOKLYN leads a broad-based community coalition
fighting for development that will unite our communities instead of
dividing and destroying them