Amicus Briefs with the U.S. Supreme Court in Linde v. Arab Bank, PLC

On July 25, 2013, the Kingdom of Jordan and the Union of Arab Banks (UAB) filed amicus briefs with the U.S. Supreme Court in support of Arab Bank’s June 24 Petition for Writ of Certiorari in Linde v. Arab Bank, PLC.

The Bank’s Petition argues that the Second Court of Appeals erred when it failed to vacate severe sanctions imposed by the Eastern District Court of New York, solely because the Bank complied with foreign privacy laws in Jordan and elsewhere, conflicting with longstanding precedents regarding international comity and due process.

The amicus brief filed by the Kingdom of Jordan marked the first time the Kingdom has written to the U.S. Supreme Court. The Kingdom noted it felt “compelled to do [so] given the grave affront to its sovereignty and the grave threat to its stability and prosperity resulting from the District Court’s sanctions order and the Second Circuit’s refusal to review that order.”

The Kingdom argues that “the District Court evidently believed the Bank should have turned over the protected documents in violation of Jordanian law—on the theory that Jordan’s government might not punish Arab Bank for the violation. That flippant attitude caused serious alarm within Jordan’s government—just as it would if the tables were turned, and, for example, Citibank were ordered by a Jordanian court to turn over U.S. customer names and bank account statements to private citizens in Jordan.”

The UAB argues: “By instructing the jury that it can infer liability based solely on petitioner’s failure to produce the documents in question, and precluding petitioner from introducing critical evidence, the district court, in effect, has labeled petitioner a supporter of terrorism, dispensed with any requirement that the plaintiffs prove a culpable state of mind or proximate causation, gagged the bank from articulating anything resembling a meaningful defense, and invited a jury to assign damages.”

Read the Kingdom of Jordan’s brief here.

Read the Union of Arab Banks’ brief here.