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14 Mar 2013

Karen Hinton, Hinton Communications in Huffington Post

Chevron in Ecuador: U.S. Oil Company Spies on Latin American Country to Escape Multi-Billion Court Judgment

The Chevron Corporation has spied…on the Republic of Ecuador, fueling a fierce battle between the oil giant and President Rafael Correa, who is calling on other South American countries to hold Chevron accountable for the world's largest oil-related disaster in the Ecuadorian rainforest. Fearing the loss of an historic, long-running environmental lawsuit...Chevron secretly videotaped the judge hearing the case…in an effort to derail the trial by entrapping him, government officials and indigenous community leaders in a faked bribery scandal…Chevron…manufacture[d] a fraud narrative that its 2,000 lawyers and legal assistants are using in a U.S. court to seek revenge on one of the U.S. attorneys who has served as a legal adviser to the Ecuadorians for the 20 years the case has been litigated…Chevron has [hired] at least three of the largest and most expensive private investigative firms in the world…to help..delay, if not completely dodge, paying the $19 billion judgment awarded by an Ecuador court in 2011…[All this has] resulted in over a decade's worth of delay in the cleanup of one of the world's largest oil-related disasters, which continues to pollute the soil, the waterways and the people living in the Ecuadorian rainforest.[Refers to Mason Investigative Group, Investigative Research Services, Kroll] [Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited Chevron to respond to this article, but Chevron did not respond.]