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Correction: An earlier version of this story stated the wrong year for the trial that Ropes & Gray won for Casita and mistakenly said that it was a bench trial. It was a jury trial in 2018.

After three years of litigation on behalf of crew members of the USS Pueblo and their families, a team from Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp led by partner Mark Bravin and including associates Theresa Bowman and Tiana Bey last week won a $2.3 billion damages award against North Korea–among the largest ever awards in a state-sponsored terrorism case. The decision from U.S. District Dabney Friedrich in Washington, D.C. follows a 2019 default judgment holding North Korea liable for taking the crew of the U.S. spy ship hostage in 1968 and holding and torturing crewmembers for 11 months. Two died during the ordeal. Although collecting any damages from North Korea is unlikely, the decision opens the doors for survivors potentially to receive payments from the U.S. Victims of State Sponsored Terrorism Fund, a fund set up by Congress to support victims of terrorism. A total of 52 Mitchell Silberberg timekeepers worked on the case on behalf of 61 crew member plaintiffs and 110 family members.

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Ross Todd

Ross Todd is the Editor/columnist for the Am Law Litigation Daily. He writes about litigation of all sorts. Previously, Ross was the Bureau Chief of The Recorder, ALM's California affiliate. Contact Ross at [email protected] On Twitter: @Ross_Todd.

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