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Friday, February 23, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Judge Invokes Solomon|in Two-Pronged Appeal

(CN) - The 9th Circuit inspired a Biblical dissent Thursday in refusing to reconsider claims over Iraq's canceled oil contracts with two Cypriot brokerages.

The case concerns claims that Iraq charged U.S. citizen Manuel Terenkian additional fees and then unilaterally canceled his contract to buy oil under the United Nations Oil for Food Program.

Finding that that the oil contracts had remote ties to the United States, a three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit dismissed the case in July for lack of jurisdiction.

Judge John Noonan argued against his colleagues at the time that they failed to address whether New York had jurisdiction.

After the court voted Thursday against rehearing the case en banc, Noonan dissented anew. This time, he focused on arguing that the appeal was untimely because it was filed initially with the wrong court, the D.C. Circuit.

"Departing from well-settled and unchallenged authority, the decision of our court splits a whole case into two," Noonan wrote. "Solomon challenged two litigants before him to split the whole baby each claimed. When one refused, Solomon knew that she must be the mother.

"This ancient story comes to mind as the Republic of Iraq seeks to split a whole case in two. One doesn't need to be a Solomon to know that a single lawsuit should not be split in half."

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