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Guatemala: 7 shooting victims file civil lawsuit against Tahoe Resources over alleged negligence & battery

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11 August 2014

Tahoe Resources clarifies reports regarding incidents near Escobal Project

Author: Tahoe Resources

Tahoe Resources....has issued this statement to clarify inaccurate media reports about violent incidents that have broken out in recent days in the region around its Escobal silver project...According to Tahoe CEO Kevin McArthur, the Company has seen a number of anti-mining protests around the project...“While many of these activities have been peaceful and respectful, violence from outside influences has escalated in the past weeks since we received our operating permit,” said Mr. McArthur...During the evening shift change of Saturday, April 27, 2013, a protest involving approximately 20 people armed with machetes turned hostile. The Escobal security force used tear gas and rubber bullets to repel the protestors at the mine gate...“Our investigation has shown that only non-lethal measures were taken by our security. We regret any injuries caused by rubber bullets, but we take the protection of our employees and the mine seriously,” said Mr. McArthur... 

 

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Article
19 June 2014

Injured men sue Vancouver company after Guatemalan mine shooting

Author: Tamsyn Burgmann, Canadian Press

…The statement of claim alleges the shooting was planned and directed by the company's manager of security… who was carrying out a campaign to "suppress" local opposition to the mine…[and that he] instructed his guards to "falsify accounts of the shooting and destroy or cover up evidence."…The company said it was evaluating its legal options in response to the suit. "Tahoe has reviewed the Notice of Civil Claim and believes it to be without merit and replete with factual errors," said Ira Gostin, vice-president investor relations…He said the company is "committed to conducting business honestly and ethically," integrating social responsibility guidelines devised by the United Nations into all facets of the business. It provides human-rights training to all its security providers and uses a private Guatemala security company that's compliant with international humanitarian law, he added. "Tahoe deplores violence of any kind in its communities," he said.

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Item
18 June 2014

Canadian Centre for International Justice - Q & A : THE CASE AGAINST CANADA’S TAHOE RESOURCES INC

Author: Canadian Centre for International Justice

...The case is about seven Guatemalan men who were shot...and injured by Tahoe Resources’ security personnel on April 27, 2013...while they were engaged in a peaceful protest against Tahoe’s mining operations...The lawsuit alleges that...Tahoe’s security personnel, in a premeditated and unprovoked attack, emerged from the mine in riot gear and began firing at the peaceful protesters...[It also] alleges that Tahoe’s Guatemala Security Manager, Alberto Rotondo...ordered the shooting...[and] that Tahoe is liable for the battery committed against the plaintiffs and that Tahoe expressly or implicitly authorized Rotondo’s conduct or was negligent in its management of the security personnel...The absence of effective Canadian legislation regulating the international activities of Canadian corporations...has created an accountability gap...Although the shooting occurred in Guatemala, the case claims that the company’s actions and omissions in Canada led to the shooting. For this reason, the suit is before a Canadian court...[Also refers to Anvil Mining, GoldCorp, Hudbay Minerals] 

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Article
+ Español - Hide

Author: Canadian Centre for International Justice

[El] 18 de junio de 2014, siete guatemaltecos presentaron una demanda civil en una corte de Vancouver contra...Tahoe Resources Inc. por los daños que sufrieron el año pasado, cuando personal de seguridad de Tahoe les dispararon a quemarropa. Los hombres, residentes de San Rafael Las Flores…donde se ubica la mina El Escobal…alegan que Tahoe es legalmente responsable de la violencia que se ejerció sobre ellos, cuando estaban protestando pacíficamente. Los demandantes alegan que el tiroteo fue un intento premeditado del personal de seguridad de la empresa minera para eliminar la resistencia al proyecto minero…A pesar de la fuerte oposición de varias comunidades en Guatemala por la preocupación del posible impacto ambiental y la falta de consultas significativas con los residentes locales, Tahoe ha continuado con el desarrollo de la mina y ha empezado en enero 2014 la producción de plata comercial…[Se refiere a Anvil Mining, Hudbay Minerals]

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Item
18 June 2014

CCIJ's Public Cases and Interventions Tahoe Resources Inc. [Guatemala]

Author: Canadian Centre for International Justice

On June 18, 2014, seven Guatemalan men filed a civil lawsuit in a Vancouver court against...Tahoe Resources Inc. for injuries they suffered when Tahoe’s security personnel opened fire on them at close range. The men, residents of San Rafael Las Flores, where the company’s Escobal mine is located, allege that Tahoe is legally responsible for the violence inflicted on them as they peacefully protested against the mine. The lawsuit alleges that the shooting was a premeditated attempt by mine security personnel to eliminate resistance to the mine – Tahoe’s lone asset and one that the company has publicly claimed could someday equal the output of the world’s largest silver mine. Despite strong opposition in several Guatemalan communities over concerns about possible environmental impacts and the lack of meaningful consultation with local residents, Tahoe has continued the development of the mine and began commercial silver production in January 2014...[Also refers to Anvil Mining, Hudbay Minerals]

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Article
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Author: Centre canadien pour la justice internationale

Sept hommes Guatémaltèques ont introduit aujourd’hui à Vancouver  une poursuite juridique contre la Compagnie minière Tahoe Resources Inc. pour les blessures encourues…lorsque le personnel de sécurité de Tahoe a ouvert le feu sur eux à bout portant. Les hommes…prétendent que Tahoe est légalement responsable de la violence qui leur a été infligée alors qu’ils protestaient de façon pacifique contre la compagnie minière Escobal…La poursuite judiciaire stipule que la fusillade était un acte prémédité de la part du personnel de sécurité pour éliminer toute opposition à la mine…et que la compagnie est responsable pour voies de fait…« Ce procès canadien cherche à se pencher sur la question plus large qui est la responsabilité des entreprises et la négligence de Tahoe  », a déclaré Joe Fiorante, un partenaire [du cabinet d’avocats Camp Fiorante Mathews Mogerman]…C'est la première action civile en Colombie-Britannique contre une société minière canadienne concernant  la violence commise dans un autre pays…[Fait aussi référence à Hudbay Minerals]

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Article
18 June 2014

Lawsuit Against Tahoe Resources a Wake Up Call for Investors and Canadians [Guatemala]

Author: Network in Solidarity with the People of Guatemala (NISGUA) - Maritimes-Guatemala Breaking the Silence Network - MiningWatch Canada

Seven victims of a shooting allegedly ordered by Tahoe Resources’ former head of security, Alberto Rotondo, are suing the company for punitive damages. Rotondo is an ex-naval officer from Peru who was indicted in Guatemala on charges related to this attack in May 2013. The Canadian lawsuit represents one of numerous abuses in connection with Tahoe's only asset, which was rushed into production in January 2014 despite strong community opposition… “Repression against community leaders involved in organizing local referenda and peaceful protests in opposition to Tahoe’s mine dates back to 2011. Some 90 individuals have faced spurious legal persecution and, in May 2013, a military state of siege was declared in the area surrounding the mine…,” observes Ellen Moore....Goldcorp holds 40% of the shares in Tahoe Resources and six of the company’s eight Directors have past or current ties to the gold [mine]…

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Item
18 June 2014

[PDF] Adolfo Agustin Garcia et al v. Tahoe Resources Inc.

Author: Camp Fiorante Matthews Mogerman (CFM) [plaintiffs’ lawyers]

[Full text of the notice of civil claim]

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