Judge allows Nevada to try to force removal of plutonium

RENO, Nev. (AP) - A federal judge in Reno has agreed to allow Nevada to amend its lawsuit in an ongoing legal battle with the U.S. Energy Department to try to show why the government should be forced to remove weapons-grade plutonium it secretly shipped to a site near Las Vegas last year over the state's objections.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals refused in August to overturn the judge's earlier ruling denying an emergency order sought by Nevada to block any future plutonium shipments to the state. The appellate court said it wouldn't consider Nevada's new demand to remove the material already shipped because the state didn't ask for such relief in its original lawsuit filed in November 2018.

Judge Miranda Du said in a ruling Monday she will allow the state to amend its lawsuit to include the new request.

(Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)