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Chevron-Ecuador and Steven Donziger update

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Updating our Chevron/Ecuador/Lago Agrio coverage:

Roger Parloff tweets:

Q: what do you get when you lie to the press nonstop for 7 years straight? A: a puff piece in the nyt. Bloomberg BusinessWeek isn't impressed, either.

Meanwhile, an Ecuadorian judge admitted to fraud in the proceedings, and Patton Boggs may be beginning to regret its involvement. A WSJ op-ed notes the success of Chevron refusing to be a corporate defendant that cowers in settlement when faced with fraud.

Chevron is meanwhile opening another front against Ecuador, through enforcement of treaty obligations in international arbitration.

Stratus Consulting retracted its expert report. I had some concern that Chevron was winning solely through bullying: I've seen firsthand litigators use scorched-earth tactics to try to force me to apologize for and retract statements that were true. But then I saw Keker & Van Nest claim that Donziger had stopped paying them and they had to withdraw from their defense of him. This is the surest sign yet that Donziger is in the wrong. As Judge Kaplan's order noted, "this is a case in which those who control whatever money is available to finance litigation efforts have decided not to pay these lawyers." If Donziger had even a smattering of truth on his side, the small chance of a jackpot against Chevron would be more than enough to obtain litigation financing. Yet apparently he is unwilling or unable to provide sufficient reassurance in litigation financier due diligence.

Reuters has had a lot of good coverage, but it's unfortunately all behind a paywall now.

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Isaac Gorodetski
Project Manager,
Center for Legal Policy at the
Manhattan Institute
igorodetski@manhattan-institute.org

Katherine Lazarski
Press Officer,
Manhattan Institute
klazarski@manhattan-institute.org

 

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