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Above Board?

In a statement from the pages of, Amazon Defense Coalition PR representative, Karen Hinton asserts that the ADC’s tactics are “above board.”  Does Hinton’s definition of “above board” include repeatedly lying about a murder to gain the sympathy and support of a well-intentioned, unsuspecting public? Hinton once again misrepresents a subject we’ve covered here before: the 2004 murder of Wilson Fajardo, brother of plaintiffs’ lawyer Pablo Fajardo.

Hinton asserted her side’s tactics have been above board, adding that, though “no one knows who murdered [the lawyer’s] brother,” the killing came at a time when the lawyer “and other members of the plaintiffs’ legal team had received a number of anonymous death threats connected to the work on the case.”–, November 16, 2009

That sounds a lot like the line Pablo Fajardo himself told an audience in Zaragoza, Spain in 2008:

Fajardo has denounced “many problems” during the lawsuit. He mentioned telephone calls, letters and threats. He even said that his brother was murdered during the process. “I cannot say that Chevron killed him, nor can I say they did not.” –EFE Newswire, September 2, 2008

It’s also the same line the Goldman Foundation embraced when it awarded Fajardo its 2008 Environmental Prize:

Fajardo’s brother was killed just months after he joined the legal team; no investigation has taken place and no one has been arrested for the homicide. — Excerpt of narrative from Goldman Environmental Prize

And it’s the line Amazon Watch has disseminated for years:

Fajardo and Yanza have received death threats in Ecuador during their work on the case, and the brother of Fajardo was murdered in 2004 in what observers think may have been a case of mistaken identity. — Amazon Watch Press Release, April 16, 2008

In reality, Wilson Fajardo’s death has been thoroughly investigated and police reports have identified the local individuals responsible. For those interested in the truth, check out a prior post on subject, as well as documents dating back to 2004 that include reports from the police, prosecutors, witnesses and the forensic analysis. You will also find Fajardo’s August 2004 letter asking authorities to investigate his brother’s tragic death, where he identifies the people involved in the crime and never once mentions any connection to Chevron or the Lago Agrio litigation.

With facts and science against them, this is just another example in a long line of lies and fabrications perpetuated by U.S. trial lawyers in an attempt to hold Chevron’s reputation hostage and  ransom it back to the company in the form of a settlement.

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