Ecuadorean Judge Who Nailed Chevron for Billions Gets the Boot
Chevron says the recent dismissal of a judge suspected of corruption in Ecuador has greased the wheels in its efforts to discredit an oil-contamination judgment as a fraud.
Media outlets reported from Quito, Ecuador, on Wednesday that nation’s Board of Judges passed a resolution to dismiss Judges Nicolas Zambrano and Leonardo Ordonez. The resolution states that the jurists “were either deceitful or grossly negligent in the ‘inexcusable error’ of not ordering preventive detention in October 2009 for a suspect caught with a half ton of cocaine,” according to the Associated Press.
Last year, Zambrano found Chevron liable to the tune of $18.2 billion for devastating oil contamination in the Amazon, allegedly caused by decades of drilling from its Texaco subsidiary.
Anyone who believed that the decision would close the lid on the 18-year-old legal battle is still holding their breath. Chevron has long argued that the verdict represents the combined efforts of Ecuador’s corrupt judicial system and an extortion plot by American attorneys.
Meanwhile representatives of the Ecuadoreans say that Chevron hand-picked the Lago Agrio, Ecuador, court venue, and that the oil giant has employed unscrupulous tactics to sway the case in its favor.