Tuesday, June 12, 2012

US Justice Department Concerned Over Iran's "Dignity"--Makes It Harder To For Victims To Collect Iran US Assets

Jerusalem Post reports that US gov’t opposes forcing Iran to reveal assets:
Lawyers for American victims of a Hamas triple suicide bombing who successfully sued Iran for damages have slammed the US Department of Justice’s backing of a court ruling preventing the plaintiffs from obtaining information about Iran’s US-based assets, The Jerusalem Post learned this week.

The lawsuit, Rubin v. The Islamic Republic of Iran, first made headlines in 2003 when the US District Court in Washington, DC, awarded 33-year-old American Daniel Miller and other victims seriously wounded in the attack $71.5 million in compensatory damages from Iran.

The court ruled that Iran was responsible for the attack, because it had provided funding and training to Hamas.

However, in the nine years since that ruling, Miller and the other plaintiffs have been unable to obtain justice from the Islamic Republic, because the Iranian government has refused to pay out the damages.

In an odd twist of events, the lawsuit has led to accusations recently that the US government is supporting Iran by filing court briefs in support of Tehran’s decision to hide its assets and avoid paying Miller and the other victims.
It turned out that the US Court of Appeals ruled in favor of Iran, deciding that terror victims could not obtain information about all of the Iranian assets in the US. Instead the victims could only seek discovery about specific items of Iranian property.

Now the case is scheduled to appear before the US Supreme Court by June 25, when it will review the ruling by the Court of Appeals which denied Miller the access to information about Iranian assets.

In response, last month, the US Department of Justice filed an amicus brief to the Supreme Court, arguing in favor of the Court of Appeals ruling and angering the terror victims:
“Compelling a foreign state to produce extensive material pertaining to its assets may impose significant burdens and impugn the state’s dignity, and may have implications for the United States’ foreign relations,” the Department of Justice brief reads.
The Obama administration appears to still be tiptoeing around the sensibilities and sensitivities of the world powers--and tyrants.

Pity none of them feel the same way about the US.

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