Iran loses Manhattan skyscraper to terror vics

By Daniel Beekman New York Daily News

The Iranian companies that own a Midtown office tower worth more than $500 million must forfeit the building to people who successfully sued Iran for damages over terrorist attacks, including 9/11, a judge has ruled.

In a written opinion Friday, Manhattan Federal Judge Katherine Forrest said the companies must hand over the building because they acted as fronts for the Iranian government and therefore “are” the government of Iran under certain federal laws.

In a separate but related decision in September, Forrest said the feds have the right to seize the building, 650 Fifth Ave., partly due to money laundering acts.

It’s unclear how the various claims to the property will be sorted out.

The terrorism victims are staking claim to the building because a different federal judge, George Daniels, in 2012 ordered Iran, Hezbollah, Osama Bin Laden and others to pay them more than $6 billion in damages.

Daniels, in a default judgment in 2011, found Iran and other parties liable for the 9/11 attacks.

The feds have said their aim would likely be to sell the building and use the proceeds to pay some of the damages owed to the terrorism victims.

Forrest also ruled Friday that six properties in Queens and in Texas, California, Virginia and Maryland, should be forfeited.

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