June 15, 2010
Families in 9/11 lawsuits ask federal appeals court to replace judge
Families of those killed in 9/11 and others injured in the attacks who are involved in terrorism-financing lawsuits believe that the judge overseeing this litigation, George B. Daniels of the Federal District Court of Manhattan, NY, has failed to actively manage the litigation - including, for example, allowing nearly 100 early-stage motions to dismiss to remain unresolved since taking reigns of the case in 2007. As a result, the attorneys representing the families have asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit to direct Judge Daniels to stand down so that he may be replaced.
Judge Daniels' failure to rule on the defendants' nearly 100 motions to dismiss is, according to attorneys representing the families, "effectively suspending the litigation…and immunizing those alleged to have sponsored the attacks from having to answer for their conduct in this nation's courts." Among these attorneys is Motley Rice anti-terrorism attorney Robert Haefele, who has encouraged the court to rule on the motions promptly to abate the families' mounting frustration caused by the long delay. Commenting on the reasonableness of the expectation that the motions should have been resolved by now, Haefele says, "Both sides have encouraged the court to resolve the motions…and the court expressed its intention to do so."
The lawsuits of the 9/11 families seek to hold numerous defendants, including various charities, financial institutions and other businesses and individuals, accountable for providing money and other support to Al Qaeda and for the 9/11 attacks.