Dutch court allows Nigerians' oil pollution lawsuit against Shell to proceed & orders co. to grant access to internal documents

Shell oil spill Nigeria via Royal Times Nigeria

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Article
18 December 2015

Dutch appeals court says Shell may be held liable for oil spills in Nigeria

Author: Reuters

A Dutch appeals court ruled on Friday that Royal Dutch Shell can be held liable for oil spills at its subsidiary in Nigeria, potentially opening the way for other compensation claims against the multinational. Judges in The Hague ordered Shell to make available to the court documents that might shed light on the cause of the oil spills and whether leading managers were aware of them. Friday’s ruling overturned a 2013 finding by a lower Dutch court that Shell’s Dutch-based parent company could not be held liable for spills at its Nigerian subsidiary...Shell’s Nigerian subsidiary, Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Ltd (SPDC), said in a statement: “We are disappointed the Dutch court has determined it should assume international jurisdiction over SPDC.”

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Article
18 December 2015

Outcome appeal against Shell: victory for the environment and the Nigerian people

Author: Milieudefensie (Friends of the Earth Netherlands)

Four Nigerian farmers and Friends of the Earth Netherlands welcome today’s ruling by the Court of Appeals in The Hague allowing them to jointly sue Shell in the Netherlands for causing extensive oil spills in Nigeria. The ruling is unique and can pave the way for victims of environmental pollution and human rights abuses worldwide to turn to the Netherlands for legal redress when a Dutch company is involved. In addition to competence question, the Court also ruled in favour of Friends of the Earth NL and the Nigerian farmers regarding the issue of access to internal company documents, Shell must give access to internal company documents.

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