Episode 7: The Mueller Investigation and Foreign Sovereign Immunity



In this episode we speak with Chimene Keitner, Fromm Professor of Law at Hastings and former Counselor at the State Department about the very unusual case of a foreign sovereign entity claiming immunity with regard to a subpoena from the Mueller investigation. Shrouded in extreme secrecy, the case raises interesting questions about the 1976 Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act and its connection to criminal, rather than civil, actions.



About the Podcast

The Society's podcast International Law Behind the Headlines, hosted by Catherine Amirfar and Kal Raustiala, will tackle, through interviews with today's top legal experts, the international legal issues dominating today's headlines. All episodes will be available via iTunes, SoundCloud, and here.

Catherine Amirfar is a litigation partner at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, Co-Chair of the firm's Public International Law Group and a member of the Management Committee. Her practice focuses on international commercial and treaty arbitration, international and complex commercial litigation, and public international law. Prior to rejoining Debevoise in 2016, Ms. Amirfar spent two years as the Counselor on International Law to the Legal Adviser at the U.S. Department of State and received the State Department's Superior Honor Award in recognition of her contributions to the Department. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the American Law Institute, and the U.S. State Department Advisory Council on International Law (ACIL). From 2016 to 2018, she served as a Vice President of the American Society of International Law.

Kal Raustiala is professor at UCLA School of Law and the UCLA International Institute. Since 2007 he has served as director of the UCLA Ronald W. Burkle Center for International Relations, and from 2012-2015 as UCLA's Associate Vice Provost for International Studies. A graduate of Duke University, Professor Raustiala holds a J.D. from Harvard Law School and Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, San Diego. He has been a visiting professor at Harvard, Chicago, Columbia, Hebrew University in Jerusalem, National University of Singapore, and Princeton. A life member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a former member of the editorial board of the American Journal of International Law, from 2016-2018 he served as Vice President of the American Society of International Law.