Carijano v. Occidental Petro. Corp., No. 08-56187 - U.S. Ninth Circuit
U.S. Ninth Circuit - The FindLaw 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

Carijano v. Occidental Petro. Corp., No. 08-56187

Forum Non Conveniens Dismissal Reversed

In Carijano v. Occidental Petro. Corp., No. 08-56187, an action by members of the Peruvian Achuar indigenous group dependent for their existence upon the rainforest lands and waterways along the river, and Amazon Watch, a California corporation, against an oil company, for environmental contamination and release of hazardous waste, the court reversed the dismissal of the action where defendant failed to meet its burden of demonstrating that Peru was a more convenient forum, and the district court gave insufficient weight to the strong presumption in favor of a domestic plaintiff's choice of forum.

As the court wrote:  "These cross-appeals arise from the petroleum and oil exploration operations conducted by defendant Occidental Peruana ("OxyPeru"), an indirect subsidiary of defendant Occidental Petroleum Corporation (collectively  "Occidental"), along the Rio Corrientes in the northern region of Peru. Plaintiffs, 25 members of the Achuar indigenous group dependent for their existence upon the rainforest lands and waterways along the river, and Amazon Watch, a California corporation, sued Occidental in Los Angeles County Superior Court for environmental contamination and release of hazardous waste."

Related Resources