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African Barrick Gold lawsuit (re Tanzania)

Plaintiffs are a group of 12 Tanzanians who filed suit in the UK High Court alleging the North Mara Gold Mine Limited uses local police as security to threaten and shoot at local residents using tear gas and live ammunition. They further allege the North Mara Gold Mine is controlled by African Barrick Gold, who failed to prevent the use of excessive force. The companies deny the allegations. In 2015, the companies reached an out of court settlement with the claimants.


On 30 July 2013 a group of 12 Tanzanians filed a lawsuit in UK High Court against African Barrick Gold and North Mara Gold Mine Limited (NMGML).  The plaintiffs claim that the companies are complicit in the killings and injuries of villagers by police at the North Mara Mine in Tanzania.  The plaintiffs allege that the police are an integral part of the mine’s security and that they shoot at the villagers using tear gas and live ammunition.  The claimants further allege that the mine and NMGML are controlled by African Barrick Gold and that African Barrick Gold failed to prevent the use of excessive force by security and police at the mine.  The companies deny the allegations.

In July, after the UK legal proceedings had been initiated, African Barrick Gold's subsidiary NMGML initiated legal proceedings in Tanzania asking a local court to declare that the company could not be held liable for the actions of the police.  After learning of the Tanzanian legal proceeding, the plaintiffs sought and obtained an injunction from the UK court barring the defendants from initiating legal action in Tanzania on matters being litigated before the UK court.  This injunction was upheld in December 2013.

In November 2014, Leigh Day, which acts for Tanzanian villagers in their UK claim, stated that the claimants intend to obtain orders from the court requiring African Barrick Gold to disclose internal documents and to take further steps in proceeding to trial. Early in 2015, African Barrick Gold (now Acacia) and and its subsidiary NMGML reached an out of court settlement with the claimants.

- Tanzanian villagers sue African Barrick Gold over 2011 violence, Sarah Young, Reuters, 30 Jul 2013
- Barrick’s African subsidiary faces suit over Tanzania deaths, Alistair MacDonald, Wall Street Journal, 30 Jul 2013

- African Barrick Gold:
- Statement Regarding Legal Claim, 30 Jul 2013

- Leigh Day [counsel for the plaintiffs]:
- Statement from Leigh Day in relation to legal action against African Barrick Gold, 9 Feb 2015
- High Court orders African Barrick Gold to stop suing Tanzanian villagers, 4 Dec 2013
- Tanzanian villagers sue London-based African Barrick Gold for deaths and injuries, 30 Jul 2013

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