Judge orders government of Sudan to pay USS Cole bombing victims

Posted at 4:17 PM, Mar 17, 2015
and last updated 2015-03-17 17:28:15-04

Norfolk, Va. - A new court ruling has come down for the families of local sailors killed on the USS Cole in 2000.

A federal judge in Norfolk has ordered the government of Sudan to pay nearly $50 million for helping the terrorists.

The October 2000 attack on the USS Cole killed 17 Norfolk-based sailors. It occurred in a port in Yemen, but after many years of legal wrangling a federal judge in Norfolk ruled the government of Sudan was liable.

At a hearing last April, Judge Robert Doumar said “Clearly, Sudan was involved,” even if it wasn’t directly responsible.

His written order found that Sudan’s provision of material support and resources to Al Qaeda led to the murders of 17 American servicemen and women serving on the USS Cole.

But Judge Doumar delayed a decision on how much each family member of the 17 victims could receive. An appeals court increased the number of family members who should receive money under the judge’s ruling.

Spouses will receive $1 million. Children will receive $600,000.

A lawyer for the families said they are pleased with the judge’s ruling, but they still have to collect. The government is trying to find assets held by the government of Sudan in United States banks.