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New York court dismisses claim on dictator's assets

ALBANY, New York -- New York courts have dismissed the claim by victims of Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos for more than US$35 million from a U.S. brokerage account, citing the competing claim by the Philippine government upheld by its own highest court.

The Court of Appeals, New York's highest, says the state's courts for now “should not intercede” in a case that remains within the province of Philippine national sovereignty.

If the assets belong to that country's people, also victimized by the Marcos government that was overthrown in 1986, the court says the assets should be returned.

Marcos was sued in U.S. federal court in Hawaii, where he fled, on behalf of some 10,000 victims of arrest, torture and execution. The plaintiffs obtained a nearly US$2 billion judgment after he died and now seek related assets.

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