Fate of $1.68 Billion in Iranian Assets Still Up in Air

Photographer: Scott Eells/Bloomberg

Clearstream Banking, S.A. and Bank Markazi were given a chance March 1 to seek U.S. Supreme Court review of an appeals court opinion that may require them to turn over $1.68 billion in Iranian assets held abroad.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit previously concluded that New York law can be applied to determine whether Clearstream, a Luxembourg bank that maintains accounts for Markazi, Iran’s central bank, must turn over the $1.68 billion in bond proceeds it holds.

If the district court determines the state’s long-arm statute allows the funds to be turned over, they will be used to satisfy terrorism victims’ judgments against Iran.

But the court’s mandate has now been stayed “pending the filing and disposition of a petition for a writ of certiorari” with the U.S. Supreme Court.

Judges Rosemary S. Pooler, Robert D. Sack, and Raymond J. Lohier Jr. were on the panel.

Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP represented Clearstream. Jaffee & Asher LLP represented Bank Markazi. Salon Marrow Dyckman Newman & Broudy LLP represented the plaintiffs.

The case is Peterson v. Islamic Republic of Iran , 2d Cir., No. 15-0690, 3/1/18.