Justices Shun Importers' $150M Fee Suit Against Puerto Rico

By Jennifer Doherty (May 17, 2021, 3:30 PM EDT) -- The U.S. Supreme Court refused to take up a petition from two dozen importers challenging security fees on goods entering the Port of San Juan that they say unconstitutionally cost shipping companies more than $150 million.

The justices' decision put to rest claims assailing "enhanced security fees," or ESFs, that the Puerto Rico Ports Authority charged freight carriers from 2009 to 2016 for cargo screenings conducted by the agency's security contractors, Rapiscan Systems Inc. and its affiliate S2 Services.

The freight companies passed the costs on to the import firms that hired them, according to a 2017 lawsuit led by Florida-based...

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