[THS] Greg Palast: Chevron Runs from Judgment in Ecuador
The Harder Stuff in news and commentary
ths at psalience.org
Tue Feb 15 18:23:50 CET 2011
Chevron Runs from Judgment in Ecuador
by Greg Palast - Exclusive for Truthout
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Chevron petroleum Corporation is attempting to slither out of an $8 billion judgment
rendered yesterday by a trial court in Ecuador for cancer deaths, illnesses and
destruction caused by its Texaco unit.
I've been there, in Ecuador.
I met the victims. They didn't lose their shrimp boats; they lost their kids. Emergildo
Criollo, Chief of the Cofan Natives of the Amazon, told me about his three-year-old.
"He went swimming, then began vomiting blood." Then he died.
See Palast's report from the Amazon for BBC , War Paint and Lawyers: Rainforest
Indians versus Big Oil
PART ONE PART TWO
And then I met Chevron-Texaco's lawyers.
When I showed Texaco lawyer Rodrigo Perez the epidemiological studies tracing
childhood cancers to their oil, he sneered and said , "And it's the only case of cancer
in the world? How many cases of children with cancer do you have in the States, in
Europe, in Quito? If there is somebody with cancer there, [the Cofan parents] must
prove [the deaths were] caused by crude or by the petroleum industry. And, second,
they have to prove that it is OUR crude which is absolutely impossible."
The Texaco man stated, "Scientifically, nobody has proved that crude causes
President Barack Obama has said that the British-based BP must pay for all the
damage it caused in the Gulf.
I've just returned from the Gulf and I can tell you, it's grim, it's terrible. But
compared to the damage caused by Chevron-Texaco, the Gulf blow-out is a picnic.
So now, Mr. President, will you stand by your words and tell this renegade, deadly
US corporation to pay for the damage they have done?
At the end of my meeting with the oil company lawyers, I showed them a document
in which Chevron-Texaco directed its underlings to destroy evidence.
The oil company men said they would get back to me with an "explanation." It's
been three years, and I'm still waiting.
There is another insidious game being played by Chevron. The oil company's
ethically-challenged law firm, Gibson Dunn & Crutcher, has attempted to block the
Cofan and other victims of Chevron from having legal counsel. They have even
convinced some pinhead judge to block collection of Ecuador's judgment because
harming Chevron would be a blow to "global business."
It would - and it should.
Read the original investigative report: War Paint and Lawyers: Rainforest Indians
versus Big Oil
Greg Palast's investigation of Chevron's oil drilling operations in the Amazon for BBC
Television Newsnight is included in the DVD compendium Palast Investigates.
Get a signed DVD or download the film.
Palast's investigations are supported in part by the Puffin and Cloud Mountain
Foundations and the Palast Investigative Fund, a 501c3 charitable trust.
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