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Top court denies land appeal

The developer who was supposed to build villas on a land lot near Rua de Choi Long, failed to have the government’s decision to take back the parcel overturned

The Court of Final Appeal has turned down an appeal filed by a developer attempting to suspend the contents of a government dispatch announcing the invalidity of the developer’s land concession over a land lot near Rua de Choi Long in Taipa last April.
According to the Official Gazette, the land, known as Lot PO2, was granted to a developer named Raimundo Ho in 1987 for the construction of 14 three-storey villas and a clubhouse. The contract was later changed in 1992, allowing the developer to build seven additional two-storey villas to replace the clubhouse.
An announcement by the top court last week shows the appeal was against a recent ruling by the Court of Second Instance that rejects the suspension of the status of the dispatch.
The developer detailed in his appeal to the top court that he would be pursued for compensation by 14 contracted buyers of the units if he needed to clear the construction on the parcels and failed to provide other facilities as promised.
But the top court perceived that it was too late for the appealer to declare such possible losses, which were not mentioned in his original request to the Court of Second Instance.
‘[He] could have indicated the future losses – the predictions that he needs to compensate the third parties – in the original request but not in this one that is against a court decision,’ the top court wrote.
According to the announcement, the developer requested the second court to overturn the government’s decision on the grounds that the dispatch would harm the benefits of the 14 buyers.
Nevertheless, the second court rejected the application last November, saying the appealer could only use his own possible irreparable losses from the order as grounds for the appeal.
The developer’s land concession over the land lot expired in June 2012, according to the dispatch.
The city’s official cadastral map shows that the involved land lot is located near the Iat Seng Building of the Taipa social housing complexes.
The current Land Law mandates that no extensions are allowed for temporary or conditional land concessions, which carry a validity of 25 years, if developers fail to complete their projects, after which time their plots can be taken back by the government.