Marriott International Inc. (MAR) can be sued in the U.S. over claims it failed to provide adequate security at an Islamabad hotel where a terrorist attack in 2008 killed 56 people, an appeals court ruled.
The U.S. Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia, overturned a lower-court ruling that Pakistan provided an adequate forum for resolving a case brought by the family of Albert DiFederico, a State Department contractor killed when a truck filled with explosives exploded at the barrier gate to the Marriott Islamabad Hotel.
“Because the DiFedericos’ central theory revolves around Marriott’s coordination of security from its principal place of business, there is inherent convenience to bringing this case in its legal backyard,” U.S. Circuit Judge Roger Gregory wrote for the three-member panel.
“The defendant is a corporate member and employer within the community where this case would be tried,” Gregory said. “A Maryland jury has a strong interest in deciding this case.”
Marriott, the largest publicly traded U.S. hotel chain, is based in Bethesda, Maryland.
The case is DiFederico v. Marriott International, 12-1635, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit (Richmond).
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