NEW YORK (AP) — Groups accusing Chevron of contaminating a huge swath of rainforest in Ecuador are asking a U.S. court to block the oil company from taking the dispute to international arbitration.
The groups filed a lawsuit Thursday in U.S. District Court in New York in which they claim Chevron Corp. broke a promise to submit to jurisdiction in Ecuador over the groups’ lawsuit against the oil company and abide by any ruling.
The plaintiffs say a special master in Ecuador has ruled Chevron might be liable for up to $27 billion in damages. The Ecuadorean trial court has not yet ruled.
Chevron, based in San Ramon, Calif., inherited the case when it bought Texaco in 2001. It has denied any wrongdoing.