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Justices quash MeHAS City land deal

Justices quash MeHAS City land deal

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Council of Grand Justices on Friday ruled that a case of expropriation of private land for the MeHAS City development project was unconstitutional.
The project, located in New Taipei City’s Xindian District but managed by Taipei City’s Department of Rapid Transit Systems, is one of several Build-Operate-Transfer items to have become caught up in disputes between the Taipei City Government of Mayor Ko Wen-je and prominent developers, in this case Radium Life Tech Co., Ltd.
Wang and Liao, two land owners, started the case over the expropriation of 239 plots of land back in 1990. They argued that they had only been told that the land was destined to serve for the construction of Mass Rapid Transit projects, not for the MeHAS City residential and commercial complex.
After the Supreme Administrative Court ruled against them in 2013, the land owners took their case to the Council of Grand Justices for a verdict on its constitutionality. As a result, the Council found in their favor Friday.
The attorney for the land owners, Wellington Koo, said it was not possible at this stage to order the tearing down of MeHAS City and the return of the land, so instead the Taipei City Government should pay compensation to the original owners.
The legal provisions in the Mass Rapid Transit Act regarding the expropriation for joint development projects had thus become invalid, and the land owners could demand a new judicial review based on the ruling by the Council, reports said.
The separate disputes between Taipei City and Radium Life Tech focus mostly on financial aspects, with arbitration continuing on a city demand for NT$7.6 billion (US$230 million) in compensation for fraud in the appraisal of the project’s value.
Mayor Ko’s administration has accused his predecessors of receiving payments that are too low from several developers of BOT projects.


Updated : 2021-03-08 06:41 GMT+08:00