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18 Jan 2011

Michael Goldhaber, American Lawyer

Judging Chevron in Ecuador on the Evidence

The judge has officially closed the evidentiary phase of the Ecuadorian trial of Chevron Corporation, where lawyers representing residents of the region are seeking $113 billion from the oil company for allegedly despoiling a chunk of Amazonia the size of Rhode Island. As the dispute begins its 18th calendar year, we decided to sift through the evidence that the Ecuadorian judge must now evaluate. In recent months, the merits of the case have been lost in the sound and the fury of Chevron's fraud allegations against the plaintiffs' legal team. In my experience, casual observers often assume: "Maybe the plaintiffs got carried away, but surely the oil company is at fault." Both parties say they would be thrilled to be judged on the science. So, here is one journalist's guided tour of the evidence. [also refers to Texaco (part of Chevron), Petroecuador]

Part of the following timelines

Review of Chevron oil pollution case in Ecuador at close of evidentiary phase of lawsuit (American Lawyer magazine)

Texaco/Chevron lawsuits (re Ecuador)