Houston, TX—July 3, 2020—Breaking News: Clients of the Houston Law Firm of Sullo & Sullo obtained an $879 million1 judgment for the 1996 Khobar Towers Terrorist Attack in Saudi Arabia. The lawsuit was filed in response to the June 25, 1996 bombing of the Khobar Towers apartment complex in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. This apartment complex housed United States military personnel, including the fourteen service-member plaintiffs named in the lawsuit, as well as twenty-one family members of those service-members.
The plaintiffs in the lawsuit alleged the defendants—the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, and the Iranian Ministry of Information and Security are liable under the terrorism exception to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FISA)—provided material support and resources to Hezbollah, who in turn facilitated and caused the terror attack on the Khobar Towers.
On June 25, 1996, at about 10:00 p.m., a large tanker truck pulled up and parked alongside the perimeter wall of the Khobar Towers complex. Security guards near the top of one of the towers gave warning about the unusual location of the vehicle, but the truck exploded within about 15 minutes, shattering windows more than half a mile away. An investigation later determined the force of the explosion was equal to 20,000 pounds of TNT, and the Defense Department said it was the largest non-nuclear explosion up to that time.
The explosion killed nineteen U.S. service members, injuring another 500 people in the Towers. The injuries to the service members and their family members named in the lawsuit were severe, including traumatic brain injuries and a variety of equally serious injuries. All 14 of the service-member plaintiffs named in the suit brought claims under the theories of assault, battery, and IIED, as well as emotional distress.
Partner Andrew Sullo stated, in reaction to the judgment, “There is no way to remove the pain, suffering, and loss that our clients have and will continue to endure. It has been a long litigation road, but we are immensely proud that our team was able to deliver the justice that our clients and families deserve.”
Sullo also commented that “No case is too big or too small for Sullo & Sullo Attorneys. The firm has taken on cases against local bad actors as well as against National Fortune 100 companies with billions in annual revenue. We have sued domestic and foreign governments as well as insurance companies who have engaged in wrongful conduct. We are especially proud of our most recent judgment for our clients in the amount of $879,120,000.001.”
1 Seven of the service-member plaintiffs were each awarded $7 million in pain and suffering damages and $7 million in punitive damages. Five of the service-member plaintiffs were each awarded $6 million in pain and suffering damages and $6 million in punitive damages. One service-member plaintiff received $5 million in pain and suffering damages and $5 million in punitive damages. One service-member plaintiff received $3 million in pain and suffering damages and $3 million in punitive damage. Four plaintiff-spouses received $4 million each in solatium damages and $4 million in punitive damages, multiplied by the prime interest rate of 3.33%. Six plaintiff-parents received $2.5 million each in solatium damages and $2.5 million in punitive damages. One plaintiff-child received $1.5 million in solatium damages and $1.5 million in punitive damages. Ten plaintiff-siblings and half-siblings each received $1.25 million in solatium damages and $1.25 million in punitive damages. All of these damages were multiplied by a prime interest rate factor of 3.33%.
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