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Article

U.S. justices question Arab Bank liability in militant attacks

Conservative U.S. Supreme Court justices... signaled concern about allowing companies to be sued under American law for human rights abuses abroad...

...Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito, both conservatives, indicated that U.S. foreign policy tensions that could arise from such cases would be a reason to curb corporate liability. Conservative Justice Anthony Kennedy, who often casts the deciding vote in big cases, also appeared sympathetic to the bank’s arguments.

Their remarks during an hour of arguments in the case raised the possibility that the court, with a 5-4 conservative majority, could rule in favor of the Jordan-based bank in the lawsuit seeking to hold it financially liable for the Islamist attacks.

The court’s four liberals indicated that corporations should not be immune. Even if the court ruled in favor of the roughly 6,000 plaintiffs suing the bank, the lawsuit could still be dismissed on other grounds once it returns to lower courts.

...A ruling is due by the end of June.

Part of the following stories

Arab Bank lawsuit (re terrorist attacks in Israel)

US Supreme Court rules that foreign corporations cannot be sued for human rights abuses under the Alien Tort Statute