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Lolita performing at Miami Seaquarium. Piotr Domaradzki via Wikimedia Commons

Lolita’s long legal story ended with one sentence from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit Tuesday, but the judges made it clear in another order last month that they want to leave the ending open for future cases involving orcas and other captured animals.

The full court denied a petition for en banc reconsideration of a failed effort by animal rights activists to move the 8,000-pound Orca from the Miami Seaquarium to a West Coast seaside sanctuary. The denial cemented the January ruling from Eleventh Circuit Judges Susan Black and Frank Hull and visiting U.S. Court of International Trade Judge Jane Restani. The panel affirmed U.S. District Judge Ursula Ungaro of the Southern District of Florida, who granted the Miami Sequarium summary judgment in June 2016.

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