WASHINGTON--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--The victims and families of those killed in the 1983 Beirut bombing are one significant step closer to collecting nearly $2 billion of their $2.7 billion judgment against Iran for its role in the bombing, which killed 241 American service men and injured hundreds of others.
“with Clearstream out of the mix, UBAE remains the only non-Iranian entity trying to keep these brave Americans and their families from collecting their court-awarded judgment for the horror they suffered at the hands of Iran.”
Attorneys for the victims and families and attorneys for Clearstream Banking have reached an agreement under which Clearstream will withdraw as an appellant to a ruling by Judge Katherine B. Forrest of the United States District Court of the Southern District of New York that ordered payment to the families and victims of more than $1.8 billion of Iranian funds previously held in a New York bank.
Under the agreement the victims and families will drop fraudulent conveyance claims against Clearstream for approximately $250 million that was transferred out of the U.S. financial system before the victims and families were able to serve a notice of restraint on the funds. The victims and families continue to maintain fraudulent conveyance claims against UBAE and Bank Markazi (the Central Bank of Iran).
The victims and families charged that in 2008, Clearstream and UBAE helped Iran move the money out of accounts at Citibank in New York after a federal court ordered the funds frozen. The suit they filed maintained that Clearstream and UBAE fraudulently hid Iran's control of the accounts in order to secure release of the money.
Attorneys at Fay Perles Law Firm said that “with Clearstream out of the mix, UBAE remains the only non-Iranian entity trying to keep these brave Americans and their families from collecting their court-awarded judgment for the horror they suffered at the hands of Iran.”
“We are approaching the 30th anniversary of the Beirut bombing, a tragic event that changed the lives of more than 1000 American families, and this poignant milestone towards justice is particularly welcome by all of us,” said Lynn Smith Derbyshire, National Spokesperson for the victims and families.
Ms. Derbyshire’s brother, U.S. Marine Captain Vincent Smith was killed in the bombing.
“We commend Clearstream for this decision and urge to Bank Markazi and UBAE to consider similar initiatives. In reality, there’s nothing left to appeal,” Ms. Derbyshire continued.
Ms. Derbyshire said many of the parents of the slain servicemen are quite elderly, and some –including her and her brother’s father - have died before seeing justice. In addition, many of the injured survivors have died from complications of their injuries.
“We hope for a quick resolution to the pending appeal. We’ve waited long enough. It’s time for everybody to be granted closure in this three-decade long saga,” she concluded.