Courts Force Businesses To Think Twice About Serving ‘Risky’ Customers

September 24, 2014
Dan Fisher

In closing arguments to the jury considering whether to hold Arab Bank liable for terrorist killings in the Middle East last week, attorney Shand Stevens of DLA Piper painted a scary vision of the world the plaintiffs seem to want to establish:

“You want to go to put your credit card in to buy some clothes at Walmart and you find out all of a sudden `Oh, we can’t do this transaction because we here at Walmart have decided you are a terrorist or your brother is a terrorist and, therefore, guilt by association,’” he said. “You can’t do business with us either.”

It was a powerful image, but the jury didn’t buy it. And by finding the $47 billion bank financially responsible for 24 acts of violence by Hamas terrorists, the jurors joined a chorus of voices seeking to use private organizations — from banks to the National Football League — to take on law-enforcement duties previously considered the province of the government.

To read the article in its entirety on Forbes, click here.