Monday, April 22

Fane Lozman ordered to remove shipping container, floating docks from Lake Worth Lagoon

The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida ordered Fane Lozman to remove a shipping container and floating docks on Lake Worth Lagoon near Palm Beach.

District Judge Donald M. Middlebrooks signed the order on March 15 in West Palm Beach.

Lozman has been fighting with Riviera Beach for decades. In a 7-2 decision in 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court declared Lozman’s home that was once anchored at the Riviera Beach Marina was not a vessel.

In 2021, a federal complaint alleged Lozman violated the U.S. Rivers and Harbors Act by placing the shipping container, which Lozman modified to include windows, doors, stairs, a rooftop deck and other additions, on floating docks in navigable waters without authorization.

Lozman has since removed several pieces of floating docks from Lake Worth Lagoon, but two floating docks and the modified shipping container remained, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

He moved the floating docks and shipping container to different areas in Lake Worth Lagoon and anchored them, DOJ said. Floating dock split apart.

Lozmans floating docks became unmoored on several occasions including once when the dock with the shipping container on it floated across Lake Worth Lagoon and beached at a public park, according to DOJ.

The floating docks together weigh over 100,000 pounds.

In May 2023, Lozman said the home was broken into and ransacked when it tied up in Munyon’s Cove near Singer Island.

Lake Worth Lagoon is Palm Beach Countys largest estuary at up to a mile wide and approximately 21 miles from North Palm Beach to Ocean Ridge, with two inlets connecting it to the Atlantic Ocean. The Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway cuts through Lake Worth Lagoon.

“Building or placing structures in navigable U.S. waters without authorization is a violation of the Rivers and Harbors Act, Assistant Attorney General Todd Kim of the Justice Departments Environment and Natural Resources Division said in a news release. “Unlawful structures can pose increased risks of harm to others, as in this case. Were committed to enforcing the law.

U.S. Attorney Markenzy Lapointe for the Southern District of Florida said: “The Rivers and Harbors Act provides for the safety of navigable U.S. waters.”

The USACEs Jacksonville District referred the case to the Justice Departments Environment and Natural Resources Division The

In 2020, Riviera Beach re-zoned his property and other submerged land along Singer Island, making the land a preservation area and off-limits to developers.

In 2022, Lozman sued Riviera Beach over the $49 million he claimed city officials robbed him of when they rezoned his land. He was planning to take his case to the high court again.

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