Welcome to the unfortunate world of legal disclosure. In a lawsuit over a 2002 bombing in Israel that killed two Americans, the Palestinian Authority accidentally admitted to something everyone knows — that it is directly involved in terrorism. However, presiding judge Richard Leon has ordered the incriminating memo returned or destroyed. From the New York Post today:
A U.S. judge has ruled that the Palestinian Authority has the right to cover up a memo linking it to a suicide bombing that killed two teen American citizens in Israel, The Post has learned.
The document — accidentally handed over to lawyers suing the authority for $300 million on behalf of the teens’ parents — reveals a “close relationship” between the bomber and a captain in the Palestinian Authority security forces who planned the terror attack, court papers say.
The two-page memo, written in April 2012 by Maj. Ziad Abu Hamid of the authority’s General Intelligence Service, also details “at least six other critical facts” about the 2002 bombing and “clearly establishes the defendants’ material support and liability,” the federal court filing says.
But Washington, D.C., federal Judge Richard Leon ordered the memo returned or destroyed after the authority’s lawyers claimed it was “privileged and protected” information.
But in court papers, they said the memo was mistakenly handed over in a Sept. 12 deposition in Qalqilya because it was folded up in the bottom of an envelope that held unrelated documents. They said the memo “retains the protection of the privilege despite the inadvertent disclosure.”