Friday, February 15, 2013

ACCG Files Cert Petition in U.S. Supreme Court

Bronze doors inside the U.S. Supreme Court.
Photo by David Lat.
Following losses in the district and appellate courts, the Ancient Coin Collectors Guild (ACCG) has brought another court action against the executive branch, this time in the U.S. Supreme Court. The case of ACCG v. U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency, Department of Homeland Security et al. (docket 12-996) challenges America's import controls over Chinese and Cypriot cultural property.

The U.S. government initiated import controls on ancient coins from China and Cyprus after finding that the cultural objects required protection from pillage and illegal trafficking under the Convention on Cultural Property Implementation Act (CPIA). The ACCG designed a test case in 2009 to contest these import restrictions by attempting to bring ancient Chinese and Cypriot coins into Baltimore from abroad.  U.S. Customs seized the coins, and the ACCG sued.

The ACCG failed to win its case in federal district court in 2011 and appealed.  But the fourth circuit court of appeals struck down the case unanimously in October 2012. The ACCG then filed a petition for rehearing, which the appeals court also rejected.

The ACCG has now filed a petition for certiorari in the U.S. Supreme Court, arguing that the appeals court committed legal errors.  The U.S. Solicitor General has by March 15, 2013 to reply before the justices vote on whether to hear the ACCG's case.

It is not likely that the case will be accepted since the supreme court rejects almost three quarters of petitions for cert.


This post is researched, written, and published on the blog Cultural Heritage Lawyer Rick St. Hilaire at culturalheritagelawyer.blogspot.com. Text copyrighted 2012 by Ricardo A. St. Hilaire, Attorney & Counselor at Law, PLLC. Any unauthorized reproduction or retransmission of this post is prohibited. CONTACT: www.culturalheritagelawyer.com