Supreme Court backs $18bn Chevron judgment

By James Barnes

12 October 2012 at 12:07 BST

The US Supreme Court has declined to hear an appeal by Californian energy giant Chevron to block an $18 billion judgment in an Ecuadorian court.

Fine increased for 'lack of apology'

The court gave no explanation as to why it decided not to consider the appeal, reports US television broadcaster CNN.
The case – Chevron v Naranjo – originated with a 2011 injunction against enforcement of any judgments against the company related to lawsuits in Ecuador. The injunction was initially granted, but an appeals court reversed the decision in January.
The Supreme Court has now effectively announced that the injunction will not be reinstated.

Lack of apology

An Ecuadorian court had initially ruled that Chevron would have to cough up $8.6bn in damages over a pollution lawsuit, but then increased the cost to $18bn when the Californian company refused to apologise.
On a blog devoted to the case, the energy giant said: ‘While Chevron is disappointed that the court denied the petition, Chevron will continue to defend against the plaintiffs' lawyers' attempts to enforce the fraudulent Ecuadorian judgment.’
The litigation stems from a 19-year legal battle between residents of Ecuador's Amazon region and Texaco, which was later purchased by Chevron. Amazonian communities claim that the company had a detrimental impact on where it operated, but Chevron alleges that the evidence is fraudulent and that bribes and corruption have tainted the case.


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