Justia International Law Opinion SummariesArticles Posted in U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals
Government of Ghana v. ProEnergy Services, LLC, et al.
This case stemmed from a dispute between Ghana and Balkan Energy Company where Balkan contracted with Ghana to refurbish and recommission a 125 megawatt power barge. Ghana filed an application for discovery pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1782, seeking documents exchanged in a separate lawsuit between the current defendants. The district court granted Ghana's application and ordered the Missouri companies (collectively ProEnergy) to produce documents. ProEnergy produced some documents and discovery materials from its lawsuit with Balkan, but it refused other documents related to the settlement of that lawsuit. Because ProEnergy had already produced most of the documents, depositions, and interrogatory answers from its lawsuit with Balkan, and because ProEnergy was not party to the foreign litigation, the court was not persuaded that any fundamental unfairness was caused by the district court declining to compel production of the settlement documents. Accordingly, the court affirmed the decision. View "Government of Ghana v. ProEnergy Services, LLC, et al." on Justia Law
Community Finance Group, Inc., et al. v. Republic of Kenya, et al.
Plaintiffs brought suit against defendants for breach of duty, improper taking in violation of international law, conversion, conspiracy to commit a tort, aiding and abetting an improper taking and fraudulent scheme, and unjust enrichment. Plaintiffs appealed the district court's dismissal of their claims for lack of subject matter jurisdiction under Rule 12(b)(1). The court held that, because the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act of 1976 (FSIA), 28 U.S.C. 1330, 1602 et seq., applied to all defendants and no exception to sovereign immunity existed in this case, the judgment was affirmed. View "Community Finance Group, Inc., et al. v. Republic of Kenya, et al." on Justia Law
Vasquez v. Colores
Appellee filed a petition to return his 22-month-old daughter to Mexico pursuant to the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of Child Abduction (Convention), implemented by the International Child Abduction Remedies Act (ICARA), 42 U.S.C. 11601 et seq. Appellant, the estranged wife of appellee and mother of the child, opposed the petition. The district court subsequently entered an order granting the petition and appellant appealed, arguing that the district court erred in denying her motion for a continuance and in excluding the testimony of two witnesses. The court held that, given the underlying circumstances and the professed goal of expediency in Convention proceedings, the court agreed that the district court did not abuse its discretion in denying the motion for continuance. The court also held that the district court did not abuse its discretion in excluding testimony of the witnesses where the testimony would have been cumulative or not relevant. View "Vasquez v. Colores" on Justia Law
Martin Stern v. Michelle Stern
Appellant petitioned for his son's transfer to Israel for custody adjudication alleging that his son had been wrongfully detained in Iowa by the child's mother. At issue was whether the district court erred in finding that the parties' intention was to make Iowa the habitual residence where the district court emphasized the son's perspective that the settled purpose of his relocation to Iowa was to reside there habitually. The court held that the district court did not err in finding that the parties' intent at the time of the move was to make Iowa the son's habitual residence whether the district court emphasized the son's perspective or the parents' perspectives; that the parties maintained no home in Israel after coming to Iowa and appellant spent two months closing down his business before rejoining his family in the United States; that it appeared that the family did intend to "abandon" Israel; and any agreement of the pair to return to Israel would have involved staying in the United States for the indefinite amount of time it would take the mother to finish her doctorate.