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LILLEY: Stink of corruption hangs over environmental conference – Toronto Sun

Date: Nov 13, 2018

It sounds like a gathering of the angels. Some of Canada’s top environmentalists are in Banff, Alta. this weekend alongside academics, leading legal minds and First Nations leaders to discuss indigenous rights and the environment. Too bad their starting point has been found to be a a corrupt scam. The “Indigenous Solutions for Environmental Challenges” conference will feature luminaries such as David Suzuki, Roger Waters of Pink Floyd fame and former chief of the Assembly of First Nations Phil Fontaine. They plan to discuss a long running court case out of Ecuador and its impact on Indigenous rights and the environment around the world. The case in question is called Aguinda v. Chevron, a lawsuit brought against the multi-national oil company over claims of environmental damage dating back decades. It was a class action lawsuit was launched in Equador in 1993 against Chevron alleging the multinational oil firm, which bought oil fields developed earlier by Texaco, polluted Ecuadorian rivers and rain forests and caused environmental and health damage to local farmers and indigenous tribesmen. In 2011, an Ecuadorian judge ordered Chevron to pay the claimants $18 billion, though on appeal that judgment was reduced to $9.5 billion. Eventually, the case landed before the United States Court of Appeals, which determined the $9.5 billion judgment against Chevron was corrupt, that the claims of environmental damage had been inflated and the judgment had been achieved through “coercion, bribery, money laundering and other misconduct.” One of the lawyers behind the case, New York City based Steven Donziger, is an invited speaker at the Banff conference this weekend. I’m not sure I should actually call Donziger a lawyer anymore since he had his licence pulled by the State of New York earlier this year for “professional misconduct” due to coercion, fraud and bribery in the very case this conference is discussing. Read more>>