By Steve Brandt
If there’s been a Minneapolis City Council member trespassed before, neither MPLS nor Council Member Robert Lilligren has heard about it.
But that’s just the restriction that developer Basim Sabri placed on Lilligren several months ago. The Sixth Ward solon was served with an order that bans him from several Sabri properties in south Minneapolis under the city ordinance that allows a property owner to bar a person from a property for up to a year.
The use of a the city tool against an elected officer appears to mark a new chapter in the enmity that Sabri has displayed toward Lilligren. The developer has run afoul of city inspectors before, and blames Lilligren for sending inspectors to harass tenants of his immigrant-oriented marketplaces. Not only was Lilligren barred, but so was his aide, Nimco Ahmed.
The matter came to light when an editor asked this reporter to check to see if relations between the two men had improved at all in recent months. Sabri’s response was classic Sabri. The Palestinian immigrant, who has said he bears the scar of an Israeli rubber bullet on his stomach, said he’s more likely willing to sit down and talk with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu than Lilligren.
Sabri, of course, was sent to prison for bribing former Council Member Brian Herron. Lilligren said that Ahmed has a tire slashed shortly fter she was trespassed and went to a Sabri mall on city business.
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