French Cement Company to Pay $780 Million Over Payoffs to ISIS
French cement company LafargeHolcim (LLC) was ordered Thursday by a U.S. bankruptcy judge to pay $780 million to Iraq to settle claims over payments it made to Islamic State, France’s government reported.
The judge in U.S. court in Manhattan rejected Lafarge’s appeal against the $780 million order, according to a court filing by the government of France, which sued on behalf of Iraq’s government in the U.S. Court of Appeals late Wednesday evening.
LafargeHolcim had argued that it should not be required to pay because the U.S. sanctions laws were unconstitutional because they violated the Commerce Clause and the due process clause of the U.S. Constitution.
LafargeHolcim, whose operations have been targeted by a number of lawsuits, pleaded guilty in September 2018 to a criminal charge of violating U.S. sanctions for paying money to ISIS.
But the company’s appeal was dismissed, and the U.S. Department of the Treasury ordered LafargeHolcim to pay $780 million on March 12, when another major international corporation was ordered to pay billions of dollars to former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein’s government.
“This settlement is a reflection of the gravity of the Iraqi government’s request, and the United States’ commitment to protecting the territorial integrity of Iraq,” President Donald Trump said in a statement.
“Today, U.S. and French companies that have benefited from Iraq’s support will continue to support the people of Iraq’s government as they rebuild their country.”
The news comes after the European Union and Britain said Monday that they would file a lawsuit against Russia over its involvement in the 2016 U.S. election.
The lawsuit comes after Putin’s regime reportedly told the Trump administration during the transition that it had no preference between Trump and any of the other candidates for president in 2016, the New York Times reported.
An unnamed official told the Times that the “Kremlin instructed its intelligence agencies not to interfere in the election or to support any particular campaign.”
This was the first time Putin has personally communicated the instructions to his Russian intelligence services.
“If, based on the U.S. documents, he were in fact involved in any unlawful behaviour