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Thu 25 Apr 2013 09:30 AM

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Jordan’s Arab Bank could face trial over terror claims

US judge throws out request to dismiss case relating to funding of terrorist organisations

Jordan’s Arab Bank could face trial over terror claims
(Photo for illustrative purposes only)

Arab Bank could face trial in a lawsuit filed by terrorism victims who accuse the Jordanian lender of financing attacks in Israel.

The Amman-based bank, the largest in Jordan, on Wednesday saw New York US District Judge Nina Gershon dismiss Arab Bank’s request to dismiss the case, according to Bloomberg.

The lawsuit claims that Arab Bank between 1995 and 2004 “knowingly and purposefully supported” foreign terrorist groups by providing funding, including payments to families of Palestinian suicide bombers. Arab Bank denies any wrongdoing.

One plaintiff in the case, Courtney Linde, saw her husband killed in 2003 while protecting diplomats in the Gaza Strip. The charges were filed under the US Anti-Terrorism Act.

The trial could take place in September or October and would cover claims brought nearly 300 people, including victims of 24 attacks and family members.

A spokesman for Arab Bank, Bob Chlopak of Chlopak Leonard Schechter & Associates in Washington, said that the judge’s ruling “is only a preliminary ruling allowing the case to proceed to trial by a jury”.

“The bank remains confident that the extensive evidentiary record will demonstrate at trial that the transactions at issue were routine and lawful, and the bank did not knowingly or proximately cause the acts of terrorism at issue in these cases,” he added.

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