Sanctions and Terrorism

Halkbank On Remand: Immunity and Extraterritoriality – Judicial Deference or Customary International Law?

The Supreme Court surprised some by ruling unanimously in Turkiye Halk Bankasi A.S. v. United States that the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) does not protect Halkbank from criminal prosecution in U.S. courts. Seven Justices concluded that the FSIA applies solely to civil actions but remanded the case – without guidance – for the Second…

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Supreme Court Finds Tech Companies Not Liable for Terrorism

Last week, the Supreme Court decided two cases in which plaintiffs alleged that social media companies aided and abetted international terrorism. In the first case, Twitter, Inc. v. Taamneh, the Justices unanimous interpreted the Antiterrorism Act’s (ATA) provision on aiding and abetting to require conscious and culpable participation. Plaintiffs’ allegations that ISIS used defendants’ social…

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Why the Indictment Against Halkbank Must Be Dismissed

In 2019, the United States indicted Turkiye Halk Bankasi (Halkbank), a Turkish state-owned bank, alleging a multiyear scheme to evade U.S. sanctions against Iran by using fraudulent transactions to transfer the proceeds of oil and gas sales to Iran. Last month, the Supreme Court rejected Halkbank’s claim of immunity under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act…

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Dear Justice Gorsuch: There’s No Reason to Worry About the Remand in Halkbank

In Turkiye Halk Bankasi A.S. v. United States (Halkbank), the Supreme Court held that the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) does not apply to criminal proceedings. The Court remanded the case to the Second Circuit to reconsider Halkbank’s claim of common law immunity. Justice Gorsuch, joined by Justice Alito, wrote a partial dissent. He would…

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The Need for Greater Immunity from Execution for Central Banks: The Case of Da Afghanistan Bank

Central banks play a crucial role in the global economy. They are responsible for managing monetary policy, regulating financial institutions, maintaining financial stability, and ensuring that a country’s monetary policy aligns with its economic goals. Because of their essential role in the economy, and the sovereign functions that they perform, central banks should have a…

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Open Questions after Halkbank

The Supreme Court held this week in Türkiye Halk Bankasi, A.S. v. United States that the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) does not apply to criminal prosecutions. That holding was a blow to Halkbank—a foreign state-owned enterprise under indictment—which had argued that the FSIA provided it with immunity. But the case is not over. The…

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Supreme Court decides Halkbank

The Supreme Court issued its opinion in Halkbank this morning.  The Court held that the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act does not apply to criminal prosecutions and remanded the case to consider common law immunity.  More coverage soon on TLB.

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Sanctions Against Russia and Section 1782 Discovery

Since the “military operation” in Ukraine began in 2022, Russia has become the most sanctioned country in the world. U.S. blocking and sectoral sanctions now cover numerous Russian entities, especially banks, which were the most active litigants in transnational disputes. The U.S.-Russia relationship is probably at its worst in 30 years, and Russia has officially…

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New Scholarship on Sanctions and Central Bank Immunity

Ingrid has a new paper out on recent developments in central bank immunity, focusing on sanctions by the United States and other countries involving Russian, Afghan, and Venezuelan central bank assets and their relationship to immunity. Some of the issues addressed in the paper involve transnational litigation in U.S. courts, including the entitlement of sovereign…

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District Court Refuses to Let 9/11 Plaintiffs Have Afghan Central Bank Assets

The District Court for the Southern District of New York (Judge George Daniels) has denied the turnover motions filed by judgment creditors against assets of Da Afghanistan Bank (“DAB”) that are held at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (“FRBNY”). Judge Daniels’ order and decision, issued on February 21, 2023, adopted the report and…

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Ingrid (Wuerth) Brunk

Vanderbilt Law School
ingrid.wuerth@vanderbilt.eduEmail

William Dodge

UC Davis School of Law
wsdodge@ucdavis.eduEmail

Maggie Gardner

Cornell Law School
mgardner@cornell.eduEmail

John F. Coyle

University of North Carolina School of Law
jfcoyle@email.unc.eduEmail

Zachary D. Clopton

Northwestern Pritzker School of Law
zclopton@law.northwestern.eduEmail

Noah Buyon

Duke University School of Law
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Will Moon

University of Maryland
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William K. McGoughran

Vanderbilt Law School
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Chimène Keitner

UC Davis School of Law
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Catherine Amirfar

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP
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Justin R. Rassi

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP
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Isabelle Glimcher

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP
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Ben Köhler

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law
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Aaron D. Simowitz

Willamette University College of Law
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Timothy D. Lytton

Georgia State University College of Law
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