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21 Apr 2013


Court reinforces pro-multinational decision [USA]

The U.S. Supreme Court…ruled for a powerful multinational company in a dispute with indigenous people, citing a ruling last week. The brief order is another major victory for multinationals doing business in the United States and who are vulnerable to U.S. courts. Rio Tinto Plc is a British-Australian mining company…A U.S. appeals court approved a suit using the Alien Tort Statute and arising out of conflict "on the island of Bougainville in Papua New Guinea and the uprising against Rio Tinto in the late 1980s that resulted in the use of military force and many deaths."…Monday, in a one paragraph order, the Supreme Court vacated…the appellate ruling…, and sent the case back to the appeals court "for further consideration in light of Kiobel vs. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co.," the Nigerian ruling.

Part of the following timelines

US S. Ct. nullifies court order allowing human rights lawsuit against Rio Tinto to proceed; order case to be reviewed in light of Kiobel v. Shell decision

Rio Tinto lawsuit (re Papua New Guinea)

Shell lawsuit (re executions in Nigeria, Kiobel v Shell, filed in USA)