Licci v. Lebanese Canadian Bank, No. 15-1580 (2d Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
Plaintiffs filed suit under the Alien Tort Statute (ATS), 28 U.S.C. 1350, seeking to hold LCB, a Lebanese bank headquartered in Beirut, liable for providing international financial services to Hezbollah that they claim facilitated Hezbollah’s 2006 attacks that injured them or killed family members. The district court dismissed the ATS claims under Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co., reasoning that plaintiffs failed to displace the presumption against extraterritorial application of the ATS. The court concluded, however, that plaintiffs have surpassed the jurisdictional hurdle set forth in Kiobel II where the complaint alleges conduct by LCB that touched and concerned the United States, and that the same conduct, upon preliminary examination, states a claim for aiding and abetting Hezbollah’s violation of the law of nations, with sufficient force to displace the presumption against extraterritoriality. Nevertheless, Kiobel I forecloses plaintiffs’ claims against LCB where corporations are immunized from liability under the ATS. Accordingly, the court affirmed in part the judgment of the district court.