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23 Oct 2003

Jim Lobe, Inter Press Service

Ecuador Lawsuit Could Lead to Clamp-down on Multinationals

The landmark class-action lawsuit by Ecuadorian peasants and Indians, who claim that ChevronTexaco poisoned their health and environment for more than two decades...could establish a procedure where multinational corporations that exploit weaknesses in the justice systems of poor countries to escape liability for actions abroad are held accountable by courts at home...The U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York ruled last May that it will enforce any judgment rendered by the Ecuadorian court against the company or send the case to a trial court in the United States if it believes that the plaintiffs do not get a fair hearing in Ecuador courts.