Arnold & Porter LLP Secures Victory on Behalf of Senior Israeli Officials
WASHINGTON, DC, September 10, 2012 -- On August 29, 2012, the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey dismissed claims of gender discrimination and purported crimes against humanity brought against several high-ranking Israeli officials, including a current justice on Israel's Supreme Court and two cabinet-level ministers. The plaintiffs alleged that Israel's family-law and social-services systems discriminated against men in child custody proceedings and marital disputes in violation of the Alien Tort Statute (ATS) and the Torture Victim Protection Act (TVPA). Without reaching the substance of those novel allegations, the court dismissed the case for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, holding that the case could not proceed under the ATS, the TVPA, diversity or citizenship, or federal-question jurisdiction. The Arnold & Porter defense team included John Bellinger, Jean Kalicki, Reeves Anderson, and Jennifer Larson. The case is Ben-Haim v. Neeman, No. 12-351 (D.N.J.).
The New Jersey federal court decision marks another victory by Arnold & Porter on behalf of the State of Israel or its officials in lawsuits brought under the ATS or TVPA. Previous high-profile wins for senior Israeli officials include Matar v. Dichter, 563 F.3d (2d Cir. 2009), and Belhas v. Ya'alon, 515 F.3d 1279 (D.C. Cir. 2008).