By Peter K. Tompa | February 19, 2019
On Feb. 19, 2019, the Supreme Court denied the Guild’s petition for certiorari. See https://www.supremecourt.gov/search.aspx?filename=/docket/DocketFiles/html/Public/18-767.html That petition asked the Court to review the 4th Circuit’s decision that treats import restrictions under the Cultural Property Implementation Act (CPIA) as embargos. The Guild had argued the plain meaning of the statute and the Guild’s Fifth Amendment Due process rights requires the CPIA to be read to only apply to coins of types on designated lists proven to be illicitly exported from Cyprus or China after the effective date of government regulations. The Fourth Circuit instead approved the forfeiture of Cypriot and Chinese coins of types on designated lists imported into the United States after the effective date of the regulations, i.e., an embargo of all coins of restricted types rather than targeted, prospective import restrictions that do not impact the sale of coins on the legitimate marketplace abroad Denials of certiorari have no precedential value whatsoever. The Fourth Circuit’s opinion is only binding within its jurisdiction (Maryland, Va. West Va., North and South Carolina). Nevertheless, the decision will likely be cited as precedent elsewhere, and will be pitched by the proponents of import restrictions as approving broad executive authority in the area.