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Nitsana Darsha-Leitner: Alleging deceptions andfraudulent misrepresentations in book attacking Israel

Jimmy Carter is sued for lying about Israel

By —— Bio and Archives--February 3, 2011

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I met Nitsana Darsha-Leitner in Toronto almost 10 years ago. She was just out of law school and had come to talk about her pioneering lawsuits on behalf of victims of terror. She just sent me a press release, which is below, announcing her latest lawsuit in which she is suing Jimmy Carter et al for violating NY commerce law by publishing lies. She has fashioned the suit as a class action on behalf of all those who bought the book and were thus harmed. This is no small matter.

I wonder how many other organizations and people can be sued for the same thing.

Wikipedia has this to say about her great impact and success.

Since 2003 Darshan-Leitner and a team of lawyers have worked with hundreds of terror victims in lawsuits and legal actions against Hamas, the Palestinian Authority, Iran, Syria, Islamic Jihad and numerous financial institutions. The cases are litigated in the Israeli, American, Canadian and European courts.

Darshan-Leitner has been involved in a wide-range of legal actions in Israel. and abroad on behalf of Jewish rights cases In total she has won judgments of over $702 million against organizations such as the Palestinian Authority. In February 2002 Darshan-Leitner was awarded $183 million from Iran by a U.S court for Iran’s role in a Hamas suicide bombing in Jerusalem.

In September 2006, Darshan-Leitner and New York attorney Robert Tolchin filed a law suit in federal court on behalf of the families of 12 missing Jewish-Iranians against the former Iranian President Mohammad Khatami. Khatami has refused to answer the complaint and has defaulted the case.

In January 2008, she filed a lawsuit for NIS 260,000,000 ($65,000,000 US) against the Egyptian Government in a court in Beersheba on behalf of ten families of Sderot (Israel) whose relatives were killed or seriously injured by Palestinian Kassam rockets.

In May 2008, Shurat HaDin was co-counsel in filing in Manhattan Federal Court against Swiss mega bank UBS GA which is accused by the plaintiffs of financing terror. Included amongst the plaintiffs were three families who were physically and emotionally harmed by the Katyusha rockets launched by Hizbollah into Israeli cities during the 2006 war with Lebanon. Attorneys for UBS have denied the allegations and said they would vigorously defend the law suit.

In June 2008, the families of 12 missing Iranian Jews filed a petition in the Israeli High Court of Justice seeking to block the Israeli government from releasing information on the fate of four disappeared Iranian diplomats as part of the prisoner release deal with Hizbollah. The Iranian diplomats were captured by Christian militia forces, the Samir Jaja faction, in South Lebanon in 1982. The families are represented in the court proceeding before the High Court by Darshan-Leitner.

In July 2008, Darshan-Leiter received word from the Israeli High Court of Justice that the petition was being dismissed as the issue was one of “diplomatic concern.” The court did however point a harsh finger at Israeli PM at the time, Mr. Ehud Olmert, with an expectation that the “matter not be pushed asunder.” Darshan-Leinter then turned to the PM with a request by the families for an urgent meeting before the deal went through. Receiving no response, Darshan-Leiter then turned to all 120 members of the Israeli Parliament, The Knesset, asking that they remember the 12 Missing Jews of Iran in their speeches and activities throughout their term of service.

In July 2008, the Center joined with Montreal-based attorney Jeffrey Boro and Professor Ed Morgan of the University of Toronto’s International Law and Counter-Terrorism Project to file a civil action by Canadian victims of Hizbollah. The law suit. contends that since 2004, the Lebanese-Canadian Bank (LCB), formerly the Lebanese branch of the Royal Bank of Canada, permitted the Yousser Company for Finance and Investment and the and Martyrs Foundation, two Lebanese organizations recognized by the United States as active terrorist groups, to open and maintain accounts at the bank. The suit alleges that LCB allowed the two groups to freely transfer many millions of dollars of Hizbollah funds and to carry out millions of dollars in financial transactions, within and without Lebanon, by means of wire transfers, letters of credit, checks and credit cards provided by LCB. LCB, the suit charged, facilitated Hizbollah’s terrorist activities and is liable to the plaintiffs for the harm that has been inflicted upon them and their families in the rockets attacks launched by Hizbollah on civilians in Northern Israel in the year 2006. Darshan-Leitner claimed in filing the suit that LCB knew that both charities are part of Hizbollah’s financial arm and that by providing them banking services they were really assisting the Iranian backed terrorists in Lebanon and their rocket attacks against civilians.

On July 14, 2008, Darshan-Leiter and Attorney Robert Tolchin of New York filed a civil action on behalf of victims of the Hizbollah against an American Bank. The action was filed in the New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan Representing 85 victims and their family members, the law suit[8] alleges that the American Express Bank, Ltd. and the Lebanese-Canadian Bank (LCB) unlawfully executed millions of dollars in wire transfers for Hizbollah between 2004 and 2006. The plaintiffs assert that Hizbollah used the funds transferred by AMEX Bank and LCB to prepare and carry out the rocket attacks which the terrorist organization rained on Israeli cities between July 12 and August 14, 2006.

The plaintiffs rested their claims in part on written findings issued by the New York State Banking Department in 2007, which determined that AMEX Bank had failed to establish adequate procedures to prevent terrorism financing as demanded by state and federal law. This is the first lawsuit brought by terror victims against an U.S. financial institution that serves as a correspondent for a bank in Lebanon. Darshan-Leitner told the Associated Press that “the idea of the lawsuit in part is to warn American correspondent banks that they will be held responsible for attacks by Hezbollah if they transfer money to them,” Darshan-Leitner said. “We expect them to follow the law.”

On August 21, 2008, over 100 victims of terrorist attacks carried out by the Hamas and Palestine Islamic Jihad (“PIJ”) terror organizations in Israel filed a civil action in Los Angeles Superior Court against China’s largest bank, the Bank of China Ltd. (“BOC”). The suit, Zahavi v. Bank of China, seeks both compensatory and punitive damages. The plaintiffs allege in their complaint that starting in 2003, BOC executed dozens of wire transfers for the Hamas and PIJ totaling several million dollars. In April 2005, Israeli counterterrorism officers met with officials from the Chinese Ministry of Public Security and China’s Central Bank regarding these Hamas and PIJ wire transfers. The Israelis demanded that the Chinese officials take action to prevent BOC from making any further such transfers. Despite the Israeli warnings, the BOC—with the Chinese government’s approval—continued to wire terrorist funds for the Hamas and PIJ. The plaintiffs are represented by attorneys Federico C. Sayre of Los Angeles, Robert J. Tolchin of New York and Darshan-Leitner.



NEW YORK: An historic class action suit has been filed against former President Jimmy Carter and the Simon & Schuster publishing company alleging that Carter’s book, Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid, contained numerous false and knowingly misleading statements intended to promote the author’s agenda of anti-Israel propaganda and to deceive the reading public instead of presenting accurate information as advertised. The suit, captioned Unterberg et al. v. Jimmy Carter (11 cv 0720), filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, seeks compensatory and punitive damages.

The plaintiffs, who hope to have the case certified as a class action, are members of the reading public who purchased Carter’s book expecting that they were buying an accurate and factual record of historic events concerning Israel and the Palestinian Arabs. The lawsuit contends that Carter, who holds himself out as a Middle-East expert, and his publisher, intentionally presented untrue and inaccurate information and sought to capitalize on the author’s status as a former President to mislead unsuspecting members of the public. The complaint alleges that the defendants’ misrepresentations, all highly critical of Israel, violate New York consumer protection laws, specifically New York General Business Law ¬ß 349, which makes it unlawful to engage in deceptive acts in the course of conducting business. While acknowledging Carter’s right to publish his personal views, the plaintiffs assert that the defendants violated the law and, thus, harmed those who purchased the book.

The suit is the first time a former President and a publishing house have been sued for violating consumer protection laws by knowingly publishing inaccurate information while promoting a book as factual.

The plaintiffs are represented by attorney David Schoen, Esq. of Montgomery, Alabama and attorney Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, Esq. of Tel-Aviv, Israel.

The complaint notes that after the book’s publication some of Carter’s closest aides, including distinguished public officials and scholars personally involved in the events described, condemned the book as untruthful. Despite being presented with irrefutable proof that many of representations in the book are false, the defendants have refused to make any corrections.

Attorney Schoen stated that:

“It is, indeed, a sad day for all of us as Americans, when a former President demeans the dignity of his office by intentionally misstating critically important facts concerning events of great historic significance and public interest, simply to advance a personal anti-Israel animus and to foster the agenda of the enemies of Israel who pump so much money into the Center which bears his name.”

Attorney Darshan-Leitner stated that:

“The lawsuit will expose all the falsehoods and misrepresentations in Carter’s book and prove that his hatred of Israel has led him to commit this fraud on the public. He is entitled to his opinions but deceptions and lies have no place in works of history.”

A copy of the complaint is available here:

For more information please contact:

Nitsana Darshan-Leitner (516) 684-9983,

Email: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

David Schoen: (334) 395-6611

Email: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Ted Belman -- Bio and Archives | Comments

Ted Belman is a retired lawyer and Editor of  He made aliyah from Canada in 2009 and now lives in Jerusalem.

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