Robbins Russell filed an amicus brief in the Supreme Court today arguing that federal courts have jurisdiction to consider lawsuits against Germany for its theft of property during the Holocaust. The brief argues that the provision of the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act allowing federal courts to exercise jurisdiction in lawsuits concerning “property taken in violation of international law” allows them to consider lawsuits concerning property taken in violation of the law of genocide. Robbins Russell filed the brief on behalf of Peter Toren, the son of a Holocaust survivor who is the plaintiff in a lawsuit against Germany over an art collection and other property that the Nazis stole from his family during World War II.
The brief was prepared by Larry Robbins, Gary Orseck, Ariel Lavinbuk, Hunter Smith, and Anna Deffebach and was filed in Philipp v. Federal Republic of Germany, No. 19-351. Robbins Russell has extensive experience with litigation involving foreign sovereigns, including litigation against the Republics of Argentina and Venezuela over their defaulted debt.