(NATIONAL POST) — A judge who has presided over most of the litigation stemming from the Sept. 11 attacks will decide whether the owners of the World Trade Center can try to make aviation companies pay billions of dollars in damages.

U.S. District Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein said he will announce his decision immediately after hearing several witnesses and listening to arguments in a nonjury trial starting Monday and expected to last three days.

The trial will decide whether World Trade Center Properties and its affiliates can receive more than the $4.9 billion in insurance proceeds they have already recovered since the 9/11 attacks by terrorists who hijacked commercial airliners and flew them into the 110-story twin towers. The attacks led to the destruction of the towers as well as a third trade center building.

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