NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) –– A magistrate judge in New York has recommended that al-Qaida be assessed $9.3 billion for the damage done to properties and businesses in the September 11 attacks.

In a ruling Friday, Federal Magistrate Judge Frank Maas sent the recommendation to a district judge presiding over a lawsuit brought by several insurance companies.

The companies in 2003 had sued various defendants, seeking damages for the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks that demolished the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center.

Al-Qaida never responded to the lawsuit and was found in default in 2006. Maas determined the actual damages and then tripled them as allowed by law.

At this time, they were only seeking an assessment of damages against al-Qaida.

The organization founded by Osama bin Laden is blamed for orchestrating the attacks.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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