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21 Oct 2014

Jim Spencer, Star Tribune (USA)

Cargill disputes link to child slavery claims on Ivory Coast cocoa farms

Cargill, Inc. has asked a federal court to overrule a judicial decision that linked the company to child slavery in the cocoa industry. Three men claim in the suit that they were abducted as children from Mali and forced to work on cocoa farms in the Ivory Coast...Cargill, Nestlé USA, Inc. and Archer Daniels Midland Company are all named as defendants in the suit, which says the companies’ control of the cocoa market forces farmers to lower production costs, which encourages employment of child laborers...[T]he Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found that Cargill, Nestlé USA and Archer Daniels Midland could be sued under the U.S. Alien Tort Statute for aiding and abetting child slavery in violation of international law. Now, Cargill wants the entire Ninth Circuit to overrule that decision.