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5 Jun 2020

William S. Dodge, Just Security,
William S. Dodge, Just Security

USA: Government argues that domestic corporations should not be liable for human rights violations under Alien Torts Statute

"Trump Administration Reverses Position on Corporate Liability Under Alien Tort Statute," 1 June 2020

[T]he Trump administration reversed its position on corporate liability under the Alien Tort Statute (ATS), urging the Supreme Court to grant certiorari in Cargill, Inc. v. Doe I and to hold that domestic corporations are not subject to suit for human rights violations under the ATS…Three months after the Canadian Supreme Court held that Canadian corporations may be sued in Canadian courts for human rights violations abroad, the Trump administration is advocating that the U.S. Supreme Court turn in precisely the opposite direction.

…The plaintiffs in Cargill have alleged that Cargill and Nestle operated a cocoa supply chain based on child slave labor, providing financial support and technical aid to growers in Ivory Coast while knowing that these growers used children as slaves.