Sanctions and Terrorism

The Supreme Court Takes Up Sovereign Immunity from Criminal Prosecutions

On the first day of the October 2022 Term, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in Türkiye Halk Bankasi A.S. v. United States. The case, put simply, asks whether the U.S. government can bring criminal prosecutions against foreign companies owned by foreign sovereigns. The United States has charged Halkbank, in which Turkey’s sovereign wealth fund has…

Continue Reading

How Congress Should Designate Russia a State Sponsor of Terrorism

Cross Posted at Just Security Appearing before the United Nations General Assembly late last week, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy renewed his call for the designation of Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism.  Proponents of the designation argue that it would ratchet up sanctions–making it more difficult for Russia to continue the war against Ukraine–and…

Continue Reading

More Evidence that Helms-Burton is Backfiring

In 1996, Congress passed the Helms-Burton Act to strengthen sanctions against Cuba and to deter foreign companies from investing there. To discourage foreign investment, Title III created a civil remedy allowing U.S. nationals to sue any person who “traffics” in property confiscated by the Cuban government for damages in an amount three times the value…

Continue Reading

Russia Should Not be Designated a State Sponsor of Terrorism

Editor’s Note: This article also appears in Just Security.

Members of Congress and President Zelenskyy of Ukraine have called for U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken to designate Russia a state sponsor of terrorism, and late last month the Senate Foreign Relations Committee reported out a resolution to this effect. The designation would have important…

Continue Reading

Doe v. Meta and the Future of the Communications Decency Act

Two law firms recently filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of Rohingya refugees in the United States seeking at least $150 billion in compensatory damages from Meta (formerly Facebook).  The plaintiffs in Doe v. Meta allege that Meta’s algorithms were designed to promote hate speech and misinformation about the Rohingya, a Muslim-minority population in Myanmar…

Continue Reading

Havlish Plaintiffs File a Potentially Misleading Brief Claiming Entitlement to Afghan Central Bank Assets

The 2021 return of the Taliban to power in Afghanistan has led to litigation in the United States over the assets of the Afghan Central Bank (“DAB”).  As I explained in an earlier post, an executive order by President Biden froze about $7.0 billion in DAB assets held in New York. A license from the…

Continue Reading

New Article Argues that the Helms-Burton Act Has Backfired

In an article recently posted on SSRN, Gergana Sivrieva surveys cases filed under Title III of the Helms-Burton Act for trafficking in expropriated property. She shows that, surprisingly, the principal defendants have not been foreign companies investing in Cuba but rather U.S. companies with only attenuated connections to such property. Congress passed the Helm-Burton Act…

Continue Reading

Afghan Central Bank Assets Should Be Immune in Cases against the Taliban

Victims of terrorist attacks who obtained default judgments against the Taliban have requested the turnover of Afghan central bank assets frozen by U.S. sanctions. Because these assets are protected by foreign sovereign immunity and because no exception to immunity is applicable, courts should not order the assets turned over to the judgement-creditor plaintiffs, despite the terrible injuries that they and their families have suffered.

Continue Reading

Litigating a Russian Bond Default

Russian 200 ruble note

The Russian invasion of Ukraine, and the sanctions imposed in response by the United States and other governments, have fueled expectations of a Russian sovereign debt default. Despite the Russian government’s recent coupon payments on two dollar bonds and apparent desire to avoid default, prices remain in deeply distressed territory. As often happens in such…

Continue Reading

Ukraine in U.S. Courts

Tanks in Ukraine

Though far from its most significant impact, the conflict in the Ukraine has implications for litigation in the United States. Unsurprisingly, the Government of Ukraine has sought to pause ongoing litigation in light of the current hostilities. Such filings could provide insight into how the Government Ukraine seeks to characterize those events.

Continue Reading

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
Bio | Posts

Will Moon

University of Maryland
Bio | Posts

William K. McGoughran

Vanderbilt Law School
Bio | Posts

Chimène Keitner

UC Davis School of Law
Bio | Posts

Catherine Amirfar

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP
Bio | Posts

Justin R. Rassi

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP
Bio | Posts

Isabelle Glimcher

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP
Bio | Posts

Ben Köhler

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law
Bio | Posts

Aaron D. Simowitz

Willamette University College of Law
Bio | Posts

Timothy D. Lytton

Georgia State University College of Law
Bio | Posts