Protesters Kept Outside New Orleans Oil Lease Agency Office

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — About a dozen protesters with a petition to stop a federal oil lease sale were not allowed into a suburban New Orleans building leased by the agency which will run Wednesday's sale.

         Jefferson Parish sheriff's deputies barred the way Tuesday, saying the building is privately owned and the owner did not want the demonstrators inside.

         The protesters say they're trying to exercise their First Amendment right to express their views and petition the government.

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         The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management will hold a lease sale Wednesday in New Orleans on 23.5 million acres in the Gulf of Mexico off of Texas coast.



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