Posts Tagged ‘George B. Daniels’

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Palestinian terror sponsors to post token bond in finance case

September 2, 2015

Clinton-appointed federal judge George Daniels is allowing two Palestinian entities to pay $10 million for now instead of the $656 million in damages that they owe to the victims of terrorism that they sponsored.  John Kerry’s lawyers at the State Department argued on behalf of the Palestinian entities, claiming that making them a pay a larger bond would impair their ability to govern.  Judge Daniels says he gave “serious consideration” to the arguments made by State’s lawyers.

In the old days, the State Department represented America’s interests to the world.  Now they seem to be acting more like a lobbyist on behalf of terror-sponsoring states (Palestinian Authority, Iran, Cuba…).

From Reuters (h/t Zadok):

U.S. judge says Palestinian Authority must post bond in terrorism case

Source: Reuters – Mon, 24 Aug 2015 16:06 GMT

By Joseph Ax

NEW YORK, Aug 24 (Reuters) – A U.S. judge ordered the Palestinian Authority and Palestine Liberation Organization on Monday to post $10 million in cash or bond while they appeal a jury’s finding that they supported militant attacks in Israel.

At a court hearing in Manhattan, U.S. District Judge George Daniels in Manhattan said the defendants must also deposit $1 million each month pending the appeal of a February jury verdict worth $655 million in favor of 10 American families.

The order came after the Obama administration took the unusual step of urging Daniels to “carefully consider” the Palestinian Authority’s financial condition, saying too high a bond could compromise its ability to function.

A collapse of the Palestinian Authority “would undermine several decades of U.S. foreign policy and add a new destabilizing factor to the region,” U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a court filing earlier this month.

Daniels said that in fashioning his order he had given “serious consideration” to the State Department’s position, despite objections from the plaintiffs that the amount was far too low.

A federal jury in February found the PLO and the Palestinian Authority liable for six shootings and bombings in Israel between 2002 and 2004, which have been attributed to Hamas and the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades.

The attacks killed 33 people, including several Americans, and injured more than 450.

The lawsuit, filed in 2004 by U.S. victims and their family members, was brought under a federal statute that automatically tripled the jury’s verdict of $218.5 million to $655.5 million in damages.

A lawyer for the defendants, Mitchell Berger, said the Palestinian Authority was willing to make a $10 million upfront cash deposit and subsequent monthly payments of $1 million but warned that even those funds would severely hamper its efforts to rebuild schools and provide for needy families.

Kent Yalowitz, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said the money was a “token amount” and criticized the Palestinian Authority, saying it made payments to terrorists in jail…

 

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Overlooked Saudi Arabia ruling: off the hook

August 8, 2012

This is what we get for reading the mainstream media.  Totally missed this report back on March 16 from The Jurist (internal hyperlinks omitted):

Federal judge dismisses motion to reinstate Saudi Arabia as 9/11 defendant

Sung Un Kim

[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court for the Southern District of New York (SDNY) on Thursday dismissed a motion to reinstate Saudi Arabia as a defendant in the civil compensation lawsuit by victims and commercial insurers against the perpetrators of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Judge George Daniels found no sufficient basis to grant the plaintiffs’ motion, noting that such a motion was already presented to SDNY and rejected in 2005 by Judge Richard Conway Casey, who dismissed Saudi Arabia as a defendant at that time. For grounds to reopen the case, the plaintiffs cited a November decision of the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit that allowed a similar claim to proceed against Afghanistan, but Daniels stated that decision does not allow the claim against Saudi Arabia to be reinstated because the case was closed years ago and the recent Second Circuit decision has no bearing. The plaintiffs nevertheless plan to appeal the dismissal. Lawyers for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia noted the claim has already lost on appeal of the 2005 rejection, and the US Supreme Court at that time reviewed but declined to hear the case. The plaintiffs originally sued over 200 entities and governments–about 100 are still listed as defendants, and active litigation concerns less than 10.

The claim against Saudi Arabia was dismissed in 2008 by the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit because there was insufficient evidence that the Kingdom’s princes had actual knowledge that their money was going to be used in the 9/11 attacks. Even after 10 years, cases brought by victims of the 9/11 terrorist attack against other governmental entities did not come to an end. In December, Iran denied the allegations that it was actively involved in the terrorist attack after a default judgment in Havlish v. Bin Laden. In June Judge Daniels dismissed 49 other terrorism lawsuits based on lack of evidence.

If the U.S. had named Saudi Arabia as a state sponsor of terrorism, which in reality it is, that probably would have enabled the case against Saudi Arabia to proceed.

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9/11 families seek replacement of Berkeley-educated, Clinton-appointed judge

June 20, 2010
federal judge

Judge George Daniels

Judge George B. Daniels, who got his law degree from U.C. Berkeley and his federal judicial appointment from Bill Clinton, has let motions related to terrorist finance lawsuits linger in New York for three years.  The families of the victims of 9/11 have had enough.  They want the case assigned to another judge who can unwind the motions more quickly.

From the New York Times on Jun. 14:

Lawyers for families of 9/11 victims have taken the unusual legal step of asking a federal appeals court in Manhattan to replace a judge overseeing a group of terrorism-financing lawsuits, saying he is moving too slowly in resolving key motions.

The judge, George B. Daniels of Federal District Court in Manhattan, has yet to rule on almost 100 motions by defendants to dismiss the case, the lawyers said in a petition to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

The judge’s inaction is “effectively suspending the litigation,” the lawyers wrote, “and immunizing those alleged to have sponsored the attacks from having to answer for their conduct in this nation’s courts.”

Judge Daniels has allowed motions to linger in the past. In 2003, he was found to have 289 motions in civil cases pending for more than six months, easily the highest total of any federal judge at that time. But he has since cleared the backlog, leaving fewer than two dozen such motions pending.

The petition is not related to 9/11 wrongful death and injury claims by families and rescue and cleanup workers that are before another judge, Alvin K. Hellerstein, and appear close to resolution.

The lawsuits before Judge Daniels seek to hold charities, financial institutions and other defendants responsible for providing money and other support to Al Qaeda and for the 9/11 attacks. The suits were originally consolidated before another judge, Richard Conway Casey; after Judge Casey’s death in 2007, the case was transferred to Judge Daniels.

“The simple fact is we put into Judge Daniels’s hands our most important and urgent life issue,” said a plaintiff…

And little has happened since.  The judge’s office has some explanations about details that have delayed the processing of motions, but those excuses are cold comfort to the families.