herein . . ." Plaintiffs correctly point out that this case was decided while the sections declaring service of process on diplomats to be void were still in effect. However, this case does not rely on those sections in holding that service of process cannot be made on those enjoying diplomatic immunity. Instead, this case merely declares the rather obvious point that if a diplomat is immune from suit he or she is equally immune from service of process.
Accordingly, if Mr. Yaron is entitled to diplomatic immunity, he is likewise shielded from service of process. Thus, we turn to the question of his immunity.
Article 31 of the Vienna Convention, 23 U.S.T. 3227, 3240, T.I.A.S. 7502, provides that a diplomat enjoys immunity from the criminal jurisdiction of the host country as well as its civil jurisdiction subject to three exceptions.
Plaintiffs concede that none of these exceptions apply to the defendant. Instead, they maintain that defendant's status as an international war criminal removes the cloak of immunity granted to him, thus exposing him to the jurisdiction of this civil action.
Plaintiffs note that there is no such exception to the shield of diplomatic immunity expressed in either the Diplomatic Relations Act of 1978 or in the Vienna Convention. They maintain, however, that the Vienna Convention and the Diplomatic Relations Act of 1978 merely codify the rules of customary international law on the issues of diplomatic privileges and immunities. These customs in turn, argue plaintiffs, dictate that no one should be shielded from prosecution for the commission of international crimes. Plaintiffs maintain that these customs are illustrated in the Nuremberg Charter, the U.S. Army Field Manual, and the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949.
Assuming arguendo that the Vienna Convention and the Diplomatic Relations Act of 1978 meant to embody these customs of international law, that these customs create additional exceptions to the grant of immunity,
and that these customs declare that immunity shall be dissolved in the case of war criminals, defendant would still be entitled to diplomatic immunity as this is not a suit charging Mr. Yaron with international crimes. This is a civil action seeking damages for alleged tortious conduct, wrongful death and personal injury. This is not a criminal tribunal. Without exception, plaintiffs rely on statements which argue for the abrogation of diplomatic immunity when a defendant is before a criminal tribunal charged with committing international crimes.
This is not such a tribunal.
Accordingly, this Court can see no reason to dissolve the diplomatic immunity granted Mr. Yaron and for the reasons stated above grants the motion to quash service of process.
Upon consideration of the motions of defendant to quash service of process and to dismiss, plaintiffs' opposition thereto, the legal memoranda, and the record herein, and it appearing to the Court that defendant is entitled to the relief requested for the reasons set forth in the accompanying Memorandum Opinion, it is this 28th day of August, 1987.
ORDERED that the motion of defendant to quash service of process be, and hereby is, granted; it is further
ORDERED that the motion of defendant to dismiss be, and hereby is, denied as moot; and it is further
ORDERED that the complaint be, and hereby is, dismissed.