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9th Circuit Digs Into Nestle Child Slavery Suit

In a long replacement opinion Thursday, the 9th Circuit explained why former child slaves on West African cocoa plantations may be able to sue Nestle under the Alien Tort Statute.The plaintiffs...amended complaint filed against Nestle USA...claimed that they were forced as children to work on Ivorian cocoa plantations...The new majority opinion...concurs with the prior ruling that the violation of universal norms may be a basis for an ATS claim against a corporation."The prohibition against slavery is universal and may be asserted against the corporate defendants in this case,"..."Driven by the goal to reduce costs in any way possible, the defendants allegedly supported the use of child slavery, the cheapest form of labor available."...Judge Johnnie Rawlinson again dissented from the ruling, arguing that mere knowledge of the child slavery prevalent on its suppliers' cocoa plantations was not enough to make Nestle liable for that conduct.

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