United Nations and Foreign Public Records as Falling within Fed.R.Evid. 803(8) and 902(5) and Fed.R.Civ.P. 44(a)(2)

The hearsay exception of Rule 803(8) includes public records kept by the United Nations and foreign governments. U.S. v. Pluta, 176 F.3d 43, 49 (2d Cir. 1999) (“Public records and reports of foreign governments . . . are within scope of Rule 803(8).”) (citation and quotation omitted); Zenith Radio Corp. v. Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co., 505 F.Supp. 1125, 1187-88 (E.D. Pa. 1980) (admitting United Nations report and holding that the UN qualifies as a public office or agency within the meaning of 803(8) because “the background of [its] creation, the breadth and regularity of [its] public business, and the solemnity of [its] duties, . . . [is] consistent with the theory and raison d'etre of 803(8) -- the notion that circumstantial guarantees of trustworthiness are provided by the presumption that governmental reports are reliable or probably reliable.”), rev'd in part on other grounds sub nom. In re Japanese Elec. Prods. Antitrust Litig., 723 F.2d 238 (3d Cir. 1983), rev'd on other grounds, 475 U.S. 574 (1986); 4 Stephen A. Saltzburg, Michael M. Martin & Daniel J. Capra, Federal Rules of Evidence Manual 803-218-19 (9th ed. 2006); In re Korean Air Lines Disaster of Sept. 1, 1983, 932 F.2d 1475 (D.C. Cir. 1991); U. S. v. M'Biye, 655 F.2d 1240, 1242 (D.C. Cir. 1981) (construing Rule 803(10), and holding that “[i]t would defy reason to suppose that such an organization [the United Nations], constituted of public entities of the highest political order, would not itself be a public agency”).

United Nations and foreign government reports are also self-authenticating under Fed. R. Evid. 902(5) and Fed. R. Civ. P. 44(a)(2). M'Biye, 655 F.2d at 1242 (“It would defy reason to suppose that such an organization [as the U.N.], constituted of public entities of the highest political order, would not itself be a public agency” capable of making an official publication”); Constr. Drilling, Inc. v. Chusid, 63 F. Supp. 2d 509, 515 (D. N.J. 1999) (finding a foreign judicial order to be an “official publication sufficient to satisfy Fed.R.Civ.P. 44(a)(2)” and explaining that “a document that, on its face, appears to be an official publication, is admissible, unless a party opposing its admission shows that it lacks the character.”). The language of Fed. R. Civ. P. 44(a)(2)(A)(i) explicitly includes official publications of foreign records.

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