As the time for a ruling approaches in Chevron’s closely watched court battle with plaintiffs’ attorney Steven Donziger, another part of the oil company’s campaign to fend off a multibillion-dollar pollution judgment in Ecuador is revving back up.
Today is the deadline for post-trial briefs in Chevron v. Donziger, a civil-racketeering lawsuit the company filed against the New York activist and lawyer who engineered a $19 billion contamination judgment in Ecuador in February 2011. In its counterattack in federal court in New York, Chevron accused Donziger and his clients—poor residents of the Amazonian rainforest—of obtaining their verdict by means of fabricated evidence, judicial coercion, and bribery. Donziger denies those charges and says Chevron is going after him to evade its liability in Ecuador. U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan is expected to issue a ruling in early 2014.