MINNEAPOLIS (AP) _ The state Appeals Court is affirming a judicial panel's decision to grant a man's provisional discharge from the Minnesota Sex Offender Program.

Monday's decision comes in the case of 74-year-old Eugene Kropp, who was committed in 1998 after a history of molesting boys.

His provisional discharge was granted last year. Authorities appealed, saying Kropp's provisional release plan required him to go to a place approved by the head of MSOP _ but MSOP's executive director didn't believe Kropp's provisional discharge was safe, so there was no place to send him.

The Appeals Court says the judicial appeal panel has authority to grant or deny a provisional discharge request, and MSOP's executive director can't unilaterally prevent it by refusing to approve residential placement.

The state could appeal to the Supreme Court.