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8 Oct 2013

Mark Hamblett, New York Law Journal

Kaplan to Decide Chevron's Charges Against Donziger

The pitched battle between Chevron Corporation and a lawyer and Ecuadorians who won a multi-billion-dollar environmental judgment against the oil company in Ecuador is set for trial on Oct. 15, before Southern District Judge Lewis Kaplan…Kaplan Monday denied the request of attorney Steven Donziger and two of his Ecuadorian clients for a jury trial in the case, where Chevron is alleging Donziger ran a racketeering conspiracy to win the so-called Lago Agrio litigation in Ecuador by fraud, and Donziger is accusing Chevron of scorched-earth tactics to avoid taking financial responsibility for environmental damage left behind by a predecessor oil company…The case has been marked by vitriol as both sides have leveled serious charges against each other and Donziger's team has repeatedly accused the judge of bias in issuing a host of rulings in favor of Chevron…