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Article

28 Dec 2020

Author:
EarthRights International

Peru: US Court ruled that Maxima Acuña's case against Newmont should be heard in Peru

"U.S. Federal Appeals Court Rules that Maxima Acuña Atalaya’s Case Against Newmont Mining Corporation Should be Heard in Peru", December 14, 2020 …The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit upheld a lower court decision that Maxima Acuña Atalaya and her family’s case against U.S.-based Newmont Mining Corporation should be heard in Peru rather than in the United States, despite serious judicial corruption in Peru’s courts. The ruling was based on the application of a technical procedural doctrine and did not address the underlying facts at issue in the case. .. “The Court’s decision closes the courthouse doors to a family that has suffered years of abuse and is simply seeking to hold Newmont accountable in its home forum,” said Wyatt Gjullin, Staff Attorney for EarthRights International. “Newmont’s efforts to move this case to a country consumed by unprecedented systemic judicial corruption and political instability is a transparent attempt to avoid accountability.“...Subsistence farmers from the rural highlands of Cajamarca, Peru, Maxima and her family sued Newmont in the United States for abuse at the hands of the company’s security forces...For the past eight years, Newmont has intimidated and physically attacked the Chaupes, killing their animals and destroying their property, all to force them from their farm and to pave the way for a massive open-pit gold mine. The family sued the mining company in its home forum of Delaware. Asserting that it would inconvenience them to litigate at home, Newmont sought dismissal of the case, arguing that it should instead be brought in Peru, notwithstanding Peru’s notoriously corrupt court system... “Maxima and her family do not share the optimism of the U.S. courts about their ability to have a fair trial in Peru. Peruvian courts have failed for years to protect them from Newmont’s abuse, which gave rise to the need to bring the lawsuit in the United States in the first place. The family is considering their options and next steps,” said Gjullin...