Dozens of insurance companies, acting as members of five large insurance groups—Chubb, American Re, Zurich American, One Beacon and Crum & Forster—have filed a lawsuit in two cities against Al Qaida and other terrorist organizations to recover billions of dollars they have paid, or reserved for payment, for Sept. 11, 2001 losses. The companies retained Cozen O’Connor to recover losses the insurers either already paid or reserved for payment of approximately $3.5 billion in property damages and $500 million in workers’ compensation benefits, as well as damages in 412 wrongful death and personal injury claims assigned to their companies. The case, Federal Insurance Company et al v. Al Qaida et al, was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, and a companion action was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The complaint alleges multiple statutory and common law causes of action, including civil RICO and claims under the Anti-Terrorism Act and the Torture Victim Protection Act. The demands are for multiple billions of dollars in judgment against the defendants, including compensatory and treble (triple) damages. Many of the defendants have been designated as Foreign Terrorists Organizations (FTO) by the US Government under section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act, as amended by the Anti-terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996. Others are designated as State Sponsors of Terrorism pursuant to the Export Administration Act of 1979 and the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961. Others are designated as supporters and associates of terrorists pursuant to Executive Order 13244, based on their material support and sponsorship of, or affiliation with, defendant al Qaida and/or affiliated FTOs, associations, organizations or persons. The range of defendants includes: Islamic Republic of Iran, Republic of Iraq, Syrian Arab Republic, The Republic of the Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Al Qaida leaders and individual supporters including Osama Bin Laden, Muhammad Atif (aka Subhi Sitta; aka Abu Hafs Al-Masri), etc., Foreign Terrorist Organizations, charitable organizations, banking and financial institutions, and other commercial entities and individuals that have provided material and financial support to Al Qaida.
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