Nacogdoches County Court at Law
Judge Jack Sinz' ruling Thursday morning was a disappointment for a courtroom
full of TransCanada opponents and to Nacogdoches landowner Mike Bishop.
However, Bishop said he hasn't
given up the fight.
"I lost the battle; I did not
lose the war," Bishop said.
After granting a temporary restraining
order on Friday that halted pipeline construction on Bishop's land, the judge's
ruling Thursday will allow work to resume. The decision came after Sinz heard
more details of Bishop's prior settlement with TransCanada. At the hearing,
Bishop argued he and other landowners settled with the company under duress and
"How do you fight a billion dollar
corporation?" Bishop said.
TransCanada claimed Bishop took
their money then surprisingly filed a lawsuit against them less than two weeks
"[He] took $75,000 in cash, in a check, cashed
it the next day, and in that settlement he agreed not to do what he did here
which is to impede our access to his property," David Dodson, a spokesperson
for TransCanada said.
Bishop said he paid about
$3,200 cash out of pocket.
"They had to pay the Texas
Veterans Land Board off," Bishop said. "They had to pay Veterans Land Board
attorneys. They had to pay my attorney, and they had to pay for the water well
they're fixing to destroy."
The former Marine said that he
has regrouped and plans to attack with a new approach. The chemist wants to
argue before a jury on a scientific basis that tar sands oil is not a form of
"Science cannot be tinkered
with," Bishop said. "You can't alter science to spin it to your
TransCanada attorney James
freeman told the judge Bishop's narrow definition of crude oil doesn't apply. In
court, Freeman spoke of a provision that he described as a "catchall for
"We've managed to convince
every judge in the state of Texas and every court of appeals that we have the
right granted to us by the state and the Texas Legislature," Freeman said.
Mike Bishop has his arguments
lined out before him. On Monday, he's scheduled to go before the Texas Railroad
Commission in a lawsuit against that agency, and then he'll have to be back on
the 19th to continue this battle.
Pipeline protesters were at the Nacogdoches County Courthouse Tuesday in support of Bishop's fight.
Friday, May 17 2013 7:33 PM EDT2013-05-17 23:33:11 GMT
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