Imagine what would happen to a US lawyer who bribes a foreign judge to obtain a multi-billion dollar award against an American company. One would expect this lawyer to lose his law license and maybe even spend time behind bars. Perhaps the ex-lawyer might repent and devote the remainder of his life to charitable causes, as Michael Milken has done.
But Steven Donziger, whom (as this column has exhaustively detailed) a United States federal court found to have bribed an Ecuadorean judge and ghost-written his $9.5 billion ruling against Chevron Corp. in the infamous Lago Agrio pollution case, is no Michael Milken.
Donziger’s license to practice of law has been revoked in New York, his home state. Though he has surrendered his U.S. passport pending his current trial for criminal contempt of court, he is still considered a flight risk and has been confined to his residence for almost two years while the criminal case against him proceeds (slowly, largely because of Donziger’s own dilatory efforts).
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