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Federal Court Safeguards Museum Persian Collections

Fri, 28 Mar 2014 16:07:56 CDT
By: AP

A federal judge in Chicago says survivors of a 1997 terrorist attack blamed partly on Iran can't seize museum pieces in U.S. collections to help pay a $412 million judgment against Iran. The decision stems from a long-running legal battle closely watched by museums. If the judge had allowed collections of Persian antiquities at Chicago's Field Museum and the University of Chicago to be seized, museums elsewhere feared their collections would also be at risk. Survivors of the suicide bombing in Jerusalem sued Iran's government, accusing it of being complicit. A Washington, D.C., court awarded that judgment. The legal fight navigated a thicket of issues, including sovereign immunity and terrorism laws. Among Judge Robert Gettleman's findings was that there was no evidence Iran's government claimed ownership of the collections.

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