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JOHNSTOWN, Pa.—A Lloyd's of London syndicate is seeking more than $215 million from the government, banks and charities in Saudi Arabia, an amount the insurer says it paid on behalf of aviation and other policyholders to families of victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, U.S. terror attacks.
In a 154-page lawsuit filed Sept. 8 in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania in Johnstown, Pa., Lloyd's syndicate 3500 alleges that without sponsorship from the defendants, al-Qaida would not have had the capacity to plan and execute the attacks.
The insurer said it has paid more than $215 million on behalf of aviation account policyholders and others in cases related to the terrorist attacks.
Total insured losses from the attacks amounted to more than $30 billion.
Defendants in the case are the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Saudi High Commission for Relief of Bosnia & Herzegovina, Saudi Joint Relief Committee for Kosovo and Chechnya, Saudi Red Crescent Society, National Commercial Bank, Al Rajhi Banking and Investment Co., Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud, Sheikh Sulaiman bin Abdul-Aziz Al-Rajhi and Yassin al-Qadi.
According to a excerpt of the complaint published by Courthouse News Service, the plaintiffs seek amounts paid to settle 9/11 cases on behalf of policyholders and defense costs from “parties who knowingly provided material support and resources to al-Qaida in the years leading up to the” Sept. 11, 2001, attacks “and who by virtue of their intentional conduct bear primary responsibility for the injuries resulting” from the attacks.
Among the allegations, the suit says al-Qaida's development into a sophisticated global terrorist network was due to the support it received from purported charities acting as agents of the Saudi government.
The suit alleges that, under direction of the Saudi government, the charities pressed the view that Western society, led by the U.S., was coordinating an attack designed to weaken Muslim society as a prelude to a conquest of Muslim territories.
The financial institutions listed as defendants maintained accounts for the charities with knowledge that the funds were being used to support al-Qaida, the suit alleges.