Request to the Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC from the Legal Representatives of the Victims, Communication: Situation in Ecuador (Oct. 23, 2014),
This Communication requests the Prosecutor to investigate environmental destruction by Chevron in the Ecuadorian Amazon as constituting crimes against humanity. From the 1960s to the 1990s, Texaco—which merged with Chevron in 2001—extracted oil from this area known as the Lago Agrio oil field and produced toxic waste. Since 1993, the victims have sought redress and accountability in domestic courts against Chevron for the pollution caused by Texaco, but to no avail. In 2001, the victims’ class action suit was dismissed for forum nonconveniens by a U.S. district court and upheld by the Second Circuit in 2002. In 2011, a court in Ecuador found Chevron responsible for the pollution and ordered Chevron to pay the victims $9 billion USD in damages. This Communication contends that Chevron’s acts to avoid legal responsibility since 2002, including its officers’ decisions to avoid enforcement of the 2011 judgment, “constitute a clear attack against the civilian population” as a crime against humanity.