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21 Apr 2017

Spencer S. Hsu, Washington Post (USA)

US jury rejects damages for Ecuadoran farmers in coca-eradication spraying

A U.S. jury in Washington declined to award damages...in a trial testing claims by the first six of 2,000 Ecuadoran farmers who allege that they were poisoned by [DynCorp] in a years-long coca-eradication campaign by the U.S. and Colombian governments...The farmers accused the firm of recklessly spraying them, their families and crops when fumigant drifted south across the Colombia-Ecuador border...The 10-person jury found DynCorp responsible for [a] subcontractor's pilots between 2000 and 2007, but not for employees of Colombian law enforcement. Because farmers could not say which pilot was at the controls of any individual plane, the jury rejected any claim before roughly April 2003 - the time frame when the Colombian police agency was engaged and when the six farmers in the case alleged they were sprayed...Attorneys for the farmers said they were disappointed by the verdict but pleased jurors found DynCorp could be held responsible for its subcontractor's actions after April 2003..DynCorp attorneys denied that anyone acted recklessly or intentionally to spray the farmers and argued there was no evidence of spray drifting at the times and places alleged by farmers...

[also refers to Monsanto]

Part of the following timelines

US jury decides not to award damages in Ecuadorians' test case against DynCorp over impact of chemical spraying in Colombia

DynCorp lawsuit (re Colombia & Ecuador)