1995

USCA

Kadic v Karadzic 70 F 3rd 232 (1995)

The appellants are Croat and Muslims citizens of Bosnia Herzegovina, they alleged to be victims and representatives of victims of genocide, rape, forced prostitution and impregnation, torture summary execution and wrongful death, committed by Bosnian Serb military forces as part of a genocidal campaign conducted in the course of civil war. Karadzic is the self proclaimed president of the ‘Bosnian-Serb Entity’ (Republica-Srpksa), not recognised at that moment, but exercising effective control, with ultimate command control over the army, the genocide was committed under his orders. The plaintiffs sought compensatory and punitive damages, in one case injunctive relief, under the Alien Tort Act, Torture Victim Protection Act 1991 The judge dismissed the action for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The case went to appeal A writ was served on the defendant in NY when he visited the UN. He then left the US jurisdiction.

1. Plaintiffs sufficiently alleged violations of Customary International law and Law of war for purposes of Alien Tort Claims Act 1789 2. plaintiffs sufficiently alleged that the unrecognised Srpska was a State and that defendant acted under colour of law for purposes of international violations requiring official action 3. Defendant is not immune from personal service of process while invitee of the UN 4. actions were nor precluded by political question doctrine Action accepted. The Torture Victim Protection Act, 1991, provides a cause of action when an individual who, under actual or apparent authority, or colour of law, of any foreign nation, subjects an individual to torture or extra judicial killing, shall in civil action, be liable for damages to that individual or representative.