28.10.2016

The Tropical Wave loses once again against the Conservatoire du Littoral

On October 10, Pat from Tropical Wave asked the urgent applications judge "to order the Conservatoire du Littoral et des Rivages Lacustres to stop the serious and manifestly unlawful violation on the exercise of his right to ownership and his freedom of entrepreneurship". His request was denied.

Pat from the Tropical Wave believes that his expulsion from the AW 16 parcel on Le Galion beach by the Conservatoire du Littoral which demolished the ruins of the former hotel on the same site, violated his rights; he has been running a restaurant/snack business on this parcel for years. More specifically, it violates the "fundamental freedoms" such as "his right of ownership, the freedom of entrepreneurship and commerce and his right to an effective remedy". He considers that "this violation is contrary to the public interest of maintaining a tourist activity" and that it is "manifestly unlawful" since, according to him, "the conservatoire cannot prove any right or authorization on this parcel in order to proceed with his expulsion". Pat finally asked that the Conservatoire du Littoral restore the premises in their former state subject to a fine of 500 € per day of delay or pay him the sum of 10,000 €.

For its part, the Conservatoire du Littoral pointed out to the Court that Pat "has been running a restaurant without any kind of authorization" and that the Conservatoire owns the AW 16 parcel. It also specified that no prejudice was caused to the restaurant, nautical club, or the technical room housing the generators.

After having examined all of the evidence provided by the two parties, the Saint-Martin Administrative Court concluded that the AW 16 parcel belongs to the conservatoire according to an order from the expropriation judge of the Basse-Terre Regional Court in December 2007 and that Pat illegally exercises his business. In other words, he cannot allege a violation of his freedoms.

Furthermore, the Court ruled that the evidence which could prove that the "forced eviction" and the "destruction manu militari of most of the installations on the said parcel" represented a serious violation on Pat’s right of ownership are insufficient. And explained that the conservatoire forced itself to "move a cable belonging to [Pat] for safety reasons" in the framework of its demolition project.

Pat’s motion dating from October 10 was therefore denied.

Estelle Gasnet

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