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Visiting Professor Joins International Scholars in Chevron Amicus Brief

June 29, 2011

Visiting Professor of Law Pammela Quinn Saunders was among 16 international legal scholars who filed an amicus curiae brief with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit seeking to dissolve an injunction that would prevent Ecuadorian plaintiffs from collecting a judgment against Chevron Corp. for pollution dating back to the 1960s.

The $18 billion judgment was awarded by a court in Ecuador, which found the company had dumped billions of gallons of toxic waste into the lands and waterways of the Amazon River.

The oil company, which has no assets in Ecuador, sought the preliminary injunction in the U.S. to protect its domestic and international operations. In March, U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan issued a ruling that would prevent the plaintiffs from enforcing the judgment anywhere outside of Ecuador.

The brief Saunders joined says that Kaplan’s injunction constitutes an unlawful attempt to intervene in Ecuador’s legal affairs.

Saunders is a former attorney with the U.S. State Department.

The Sun Herald of Biloxi, Miss. announced the filing by the scholars, who come from South Africa and Australia, as well as the U.S.