Attorneys for the Arab Bank are seeking relief from the recent jury verdict entered against it, on behalf of victims of Hamas terrorist acts, and their next of kin. Their counsel has filed:
(1) A Motion for a New Trial; the bank claims that the jury committed "many serious errors,", and the trial judge committed "significant errors."
(2) A Motion for A Judgment as a Matter of Law, asserting that the bank was "harshly sanctioned" for refusing to make discovery, where to do so would violate foreign bank secrecy laws, and barred the bank from advising why it could not comply, but instead the jury was advised that the bank had refused to comply with discovery laws.
Extensive memoranda of law have also been filed in support of the motions. We shall avoid, at this time, covering the arguments cited therein, as they will certainly appear in depth when the case goes up on appeal, since the bank has already indicated that this is their intention. The chances that either of these post-trial motions are granted are slim, given the Court's prior rulings.
The Arab Bank has released a statement, which I believe summarizes its legal position at this time; it has been posted on the bank's website, and you may access it here*.
The case has generated global interest, as it holds, if affirmed on appeal, that a bank is liable to victims of a terrorist organization, if it knowingly provides material support to that group. In this case, it made payments, destined for the families of Hamas suicide bombers, and those of convicted terrorists who were in custody. Should the decision become law, specific knowledge of terrorist activities will not be required to find financial institutions liable for the sins of their known terrorist clients.
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