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U.S. court refuses to hold Occidental liable in Colombia bombing

Author: Jonathan Stempel, Reuters, Published on: 12 November 2014

A divided federal appeals court…refused to hold Occidental Petroleum Corp and a security contractor legally responsible for alleged complicity in a 1998 military bombing of a Colombian village that killed 17 people…The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals…said victims' families could not pursue claims against Occidental and…AirScan Inc under two U.S. human rights laws, the Alien Tort Statute (ATS) and Torture Victims Protection Act. Writing for a 2-1 majority, Circuit Judge Jay Bybee cited [the]…Kiobel v Royal Dutch Petroleum Co [decision] in finding that the ATS did not apply…U.S. District Judge Thomas Zilly…dissented from [the] decision…He said the majority "needlessly announces novel standards that will thwart the ability of not only these plaintiffs, but also of every other alien who seeks to hold a U.S. corporation accountable for atrocities committed abroad."

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Related companies: AirScan Occidental Petroleum