NEW YORK - The families of 17 US servicemen killed in a 1996 bombing in Saudi Arabia linked to Iran can collect damages from Iran-funded accounts at the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, a federal judge ruled on Tuesday.
US District Judge P. Kevin Castel in Manhattan ordered the bank, which did not oppose the motion, to hand over more than $260,000 in various accounts linked to Tehran, still a far cry from the full amount to which the families are entitled.In June 1996, a truck bomb destroyed the Khobar Towers, a housing complex in Saudi Arabia, killing 19 US servicemen. The FBI would later conclude that Iran provided training and support for the attack.
The families won a default judgment in US District Court in Washington, DC against the Iranian government in 2006 for more than $250 million, an amount that was later increased to $337 million. Iran refused to defend the lawsuit in court, claiming it had sovereign immunity.
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