Judge Dismisses Lazare Kaplan Case Versus Antwerp Bank

On Sept. 5, a New York federal judge dismissed Lazare Kaplan’s widely-watched $500 million suit against Antwerp Diamond Bank, ruling the case would be better tried in Belgium.

In the 163-page complaint filed in December, LKI alleges that Belgian dealer Erez Daleyot misappropriated the company’s Angolan diamonds, and that ADB helped facilitate this misappropriation. ADB denies the charges.

In April, ADB filed a motion for the case to be dismissed because the case was also being litigated in Belgium—arguments with which the judge ultimately agreed.

“Belgium is an adequate alternative forum,” wrote Judge Andrew Carter. “New York has minimal interest in this litigation.”

He also noted that Belgium would be more convenient for case witnesses, since most are based out of Antwerp.

LKI has cited the ongoing litigation as a reason that the public company has not filed financial returns for the past three years.

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