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Chevron Wins Ruling Ecuador Judgment Was Devil’s Deal

A U.S. judge handed Chevron Corp. a key victory in the energy company’s long-fought battle against a multibillion-dollar pollution lawsuit in Ecuador, ruling the American lawyer leading the case resorted to bribery and fraud.

U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan agreed with Chevron yesterday that attorney Steven Donziger had paid off a judge and engaged in money laundering to secure a $9.5 billion judgment from an Ecuadorean court against the global oil giant. The ruling leaves Donziger, who spent the past two decades fighting Chevron, with a slimmer chance of securing compensation for rain forest dwellers in the country’s Lago Agrio area who claimed their land was turned into a toxic dumping ground for foreign oil interests.