It's been month since the historic ruling in Ecuador that found Chevron guilty of polluting a large swath of the Ecuadorean Amazon. In response, as it has said all along, Chevron has vowed to not pay the $8.6 billion fine imposed on it, and on Thursday it won a preliminary injunction in a federal court in New York against the indigenous plaintiffs in the case. Many NGOs are fighting alongside the injured indigenous community, led by the Rainforest Action Network, which has a new website up that singles out what it calls Chevron's "Human Rights Hitmen." RAN's online campaigner Mike Gaworecki tells me:
"From its legal advisers to its PR flacks and dirty tricks operatives, Chevron has employed a crack team of folks who are paid to help the company avoid responsibility for its massive oil contamination in the Ecuadorean Amazon. With last month's historic verdict, there is no longer any question about Chevron's guilt. Chevron may be rich and powerful, but it's not above the law."
In response to the ruling in Ecuador, Chevron filed a Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) suit, originally intended by Congress as a tool to fight the mafia. That case is ongoing, but the injunction is further evidence that this fight is long from over.
You can check out the site for yourself and make your own judgments about Chevron's guilt and responsibility to provide remediation and compensation. And here's a story about Ecuador's Ambassador to the US taking umbrage with the injunction.