December 7, 2004

Suing Terror Sponsors

Instapundit writes (tongue in cheek, I think):

Sending trial lawyers after terrorists seems a bit unsporting, though.

Well maybe it's unsporting and I'm not sure the degree that it helps. (Though there have been several legal victories against terror sponsors, collecting is a different matter.) I wasn't going to register for the article Instapundit cited, but it's about the efforts of Stanley and Janet Boim to sue organizations that funded Hamas, the terror organization responsible for killing their son, David.
David Strachman representing the estate of Yaron Ungar used that anti-Terrorism act of 1991 to sue the PA for Mr. Ungar's death. (Yaron Ungar was an American citizen and covered by the ATA, his wife Efrat was not an American citizen, so Strachman could not sue on her behalf. In July, a magistrate in the District Court of Rhode Island upheld the award of over $116 million against the PA. For more on the case read this.
Tobacco lawyer Ronald Motley has teamed with Allan Gerson who brought a suit against Libya for Pan Am Flight 103 to sue Saudi Arabia - including members of the Royal Family - for enabling 9/11. Gerson was successful in winning a judgment of $2.7 billion from Libya for its responsibility in causing the destruction of Flight 103.
Winning these judgments may not be all that hard; collecting them is very difficult. And the government isn't always supportive of these efforts. The government has not been helping Motley and Gerson.
The government has also hampered the efforts of Steven Flatow to collect on a $247 million judgment he won against Iran for supporting Islamic Jihad, which was responsible for the bombing that killed his daughter Alisa.
These lawyers feel that hitting those who fund terror in their pocketbooks will reduce their ability to foster terror. But in order to do that, there's the need to be able to collect.
Crossposted on Israpundit and Soccer Dad.

Posted by SoccerDad at December 7, 2004 8:05 PM
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