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Colombians sue coal firm (Drummond Company based in Birmingham, Ala.)

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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-29-09 04:58 AM
Original message
Colombians sue coal firm (Drummond Company based in Birmingham, Ala.)
Edited on Fri May-29-09 05:00 AM by Judi Lynn
Source: Miami Herald

on Friday, 05.29.09
Colombians sue coal firm

Relatives of dozens of slain Colombians have sued a U.S.-based coal company in federal court in Alabama, accusing the firm of making millions of dollars in payments to a paramilitary group that sowed terror in the South American country.

The suit said 67 victims of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia, also known as AUC, included labor activists, farmworkers and others. It claimed the right-wing group received payments from operatives for Drummond Co. to assassinate top union leaders and protect the company's coal mine and railroad in Colombia.

A similar lawsuit ended in 2007 with a verdict for Drummond, which has repeatedly denied any connection with the Colombian violence.

Read more:

Activists pursue Drummond Coal over Colombian union leader murders
New federal lawsuit again pursues claims U.S. coal miner Drummond paid millions to Colombia Paramilitary Terrorists who murdered 67 Colombians, reportedly executing two union organizers at their mine.

Author: Dorothy Kosich
Posted: Friday , 29 May 2009


In spite of a December 2008 jury trial verdict funding that U.S. coal company Drummond and its officers were innocent of any involvement or responsibility for the murders of union leaders in Colombia in 2001, a federal civil lawsuit claims the company "paid millions of dollars to a Colombian paramilitary terrorist group that ...was responsible for the deaths of 67 people."

The Florida law firm of Conrad and Scherer filed the lawsuit on behalf of 252 plaintiffs, who are relatives of 67 victims, including four women. The litigation was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Alabama Western Division. Drummond is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama.

Former United Self-Defense Forces of Columbia (AUC) head Salvatore Mancuso has testified both in court and before U.S. congressional committees that Drummond Company and its subsidiary Drummond Ltd. "had provided substantial support to the AUC and had paid the AUC to assassinate the top union leaders at the Drummond coal mine in Cesar Province, Colombia."

The lawsuit claims, "Other AUC leaders have stated recently that Drummond provided substantial support to the AUC to provide security and other services to protect the Drummond mine, railroad and other facilities from attacks by the FARC and also to pacify the local population."

A division of the AUC, the Juan Andres Alvarez Front was assigned to protect Drummond rail line. The lawsuit asserts, "From 1999, when Drummond first started providing significant funds to the Juan Andres Alvarez Front to March 2006, when the Colombia government demobilized the AUC's Northern Block, hundreds of people were executed by the Juan Andres Alvarez Front during the course of its security operations' for Drummond.

"These people were murdered solely because Drummond brought the Juan Andes Alvarez Front to the area of the railroad, provided it with substantial financial and other material support, and directed it to clear the area of suspected rebels and guerillas," the lawsuit claims.

The plaintiffs claim that Drummond knew "that hundreds or even thousands of people living in the railroad corridor would be executed as part of the AUC's method for terrorizing a population."

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ConcernedCanuk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-29-09 08:44 AM
Response to Original message
1. "Matewan" - good ole USA methods alive and well

80 years later Matewan Massacre ideals/methods live on

exporting good ole USA values . .

ruh roh


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