| NEW YORK, Sept 12
NEW YORK, Sept 12 A U.S. man can proceed with a
lawsuit seeking to hold Arab Bank liable for providing
material support to Palestinian group Hamas, a federal judge
ruled on Wednesday.
U.S. District Judge Jack Weinstein in Brooklyn, New York,
denied Jordan-based Arab Bank's motion to dismiss the entire
2011 lawsuit filed by Mati Gill, a dual citizen of the United
States and Israel who was wounded in 2008 by gunshots fired from
Gaza into Israel.
According to the ruling, a speaker purporting to represent
Hamas claimed credit for the shooting that injured Gill. Gill is
seeking monetary damages from Arab Bank under the U.S.
Anti-Terrorism Act, charging that the bank violated the law by
providing financial support to Hamas.
Hamas, along with its leaders and affiliates, is designated
a foreign terrorist organization by the United States.
Arab Bank denied the claims, saying Gill was caught in the
crossfire between two military forces and that he had failed to
show Arab Bank's liability for the shooting.
Weinstein dismissed one of Gill's claims, which sought to
hold Arab Bank responsible for aiding and abetting Hamas's
shooting, finding that the act did not provide for secondary
He said that Arab Bank could be held liable for Gill's
remaining claims, which include allegations that the bank
conspired with Hamas to commit acts of violence and provided
material support to the group.
The case will now proceed with Arab Bank's motion for
summary judgment, which is due in the coming weeks. If the case
survives that hurdle, it will go to trial on Nov. 19.
In his ruling, Weinstein laid out a number of factors that
Gill will have to establish to advance his case. They include
proving the bank acted with knowledge that funds it made
available to Hamas's political branch had made their way to its
military operations; that Hamas used the money to fund the
attack; that the bank had been aware that the funds could be
used to harm U.S. citizens.
An attorney for Gill, Gary Osen, said he was heartened by
Weinstein's ruling, which brings the case one step closer to
"If we get through the next few hurdles that have been laid
out on the schedule, the judge has indicated that he recognizes
the public policy importance and significance of this case,"
Arab Bank said in a statement the ruling "clearly outlined
the proof that will be required for the plaintiff to survive a
summary judgment motion, which the bank plans to file next
The case is one of several filed in federal court in
Brooklyn against banks on behalf of U.S. citizens who were
harmed or killed in attacks by Hamas-affiliated groups. It could
be among the first of those to go to trial.
The case is Gill v. Arab Bank, U.S. District Court for the
Eastern District of New York, No. 11-3706.