Saturday, January 31, 2015


As some of our readers may recall, the Federal civil suit against Arab Bank has been pending since 2004; even a first-year law student knows that such delays usually occur when the defendant's strategy is to endlessly delay the adjudication of the case. Sometimes the plaintiffs runs out of funds, or resolve, and cases have been known to be dismissed, leaving justice undone. That is not the case here, but the defense in the Arab Bank case is still trying to unnecessarily delay the start of the trial, in the opinion of this blog, but they only achieved a temporary respite recently.

The trial date, which  the Court set for the Spring, when media attention would be focused upon the graphic testimony about 300 US citizens killed or injured, which will most likely totally alienate the American public even more than it is already, due to its utter disgust at Arab Bank's alleged payment to the families of suicide bombers who killed non-combatants  in Israel. That is terrorist financing in its very worst incarnation.

Even though the Court has limited discovery, ruling that "the Court will not allow unfettered and unnecessarily burdensome Discovery," the defense still threw out as many obstacles as it could.  The defense announced, belatedly, that it intends to take more third-party Discovery than it has in last the ten years of this case, but at the same time, it has not taken affirmative steps to secure that Discovery.

The Court took defense counsel's concerns about their inability to complete Discovery before the trial date, and reset the trial date. Now, with jury selection rescheduled for July 13, the trial will begin when most Americans are on summer vacation, and the rest probably less attentive to the news, due to the high temperatures, and warm weather activities. Was this the true intention of all that noise about Discovery and deadlines, I wonder ?

Nevertheless, though the wheels of justice have ground quite slowly, there will be a resolution, on the merits, of this case, which Arab Bank surely know could potentially result in a huge jury verdict*, massive reputation damage against the Bank, and even the termination of long-established correspondent relationships with US and EU banks, and possibly the closing of overseas branches. No wonder the Bank fears the trial date; It could be the end of the Bank.
* With ISIS/ISIL/Islamic State now potentially on the border with Jordan, where its headquarters is located, the Bank could be presented with another existential threat.

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