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Wed, Jun 22, 2011

Court Rebuffs Flight 447 Families

Judge In Northern California Says Claims Should Be Filed In French Courts

A judge in northern California has ruled that claims brought by the families of those lost on Air France flight 447 in 2009 can not be filed in U.S. courts, and reportedly places stringent limits on the damages they may expect to recover.

Attorneys for some of the plaintiffs in a suit which targets U.S. companies which manufactured parts on the Airbus A330 which went down in thunderstorms over the Atlantic ocean said they should be able to seek damages in U.S. courts. But the Wall Street Journal reports that Judge Charles Breyer upheld his previous decision that the law required the case to be heard in France. He also said that was a better venue because  French authorities were conducting a detailed investigation into the accident.

Those American companies, with names like Honeywell and GE, have also said that the case has strong connections with France. Attorneys for the plaintiffs say they will determine next week whether to appeal Breyer's decision to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

FMI: www.cand.uscourts.gov

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