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Steven Donziger Chevron Ecuador: Progressives Support His Contempt of Court?

Steven-Donzinger
The lawyer of Ecuadorean people affected by Texaco-Chevron --who have long sought compensation for pollution between the 1970s and early 1990s-- Steven Donziger, speaks during a press conference on March 19, 2014 in Quito. Earlier this month, a US judge upheld Chevron's allegations that an Ecuadoran court decision ordering it to pay $9.5 billion for oil pollution in the Amazon jungle was fraudulently obtained. Donziger announced they will appeal against this decision. AFP PHOTO / RODRIGO BUENDIA (Photo credit should read RODRIGO BUENDIA/AFP/Getty Images)

Attorney Steven Donziger was disbarred and rebuked by U.S. courts for a $9.5 billion shakedown of Chevron in Ecuador. But now as he faces criminal contempt charges, progressives are lionizing him as a human-rights martyr.

Readers may recall Mr. Donziger’s legal and media campaign against Texaco (now merged with Chevron) for its alleged failure to clean up oil pits from its work in Ecuador during the 1970s. Chevron claimed it had cleaned up the pits, but Mr. Donziger used legal chicanery to obtain a $9.5 billion judgment in Ecuador.

Chevron fought back in U.S. court and won. Federal Judge Lewis Kaplan (a Clinton appointee) in 2014 excoriated Mr. Donziger in a 485-page ruling for engaging in judicial bribery, coercion, money-laundering, witness tampering and hiring an American consulting firm to ghostwrite an expert’s report, among other legal misconduct.

To read the full story on the Wall Street Journal, click here.

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