Opening arguments began last week in federal court in San Francisco in the landmark human rights case of Bowoto v. Chevron. In its seventh year of litigation, the case raises important issues regarding liability of multinational corporations in U.S. courts. Survivor Larry Bowoto and eighteen other plaintiffs are accusing Chevron of collaboration with Nigerian military in brutal suppression of a protest by unarmed villagers on a Chevron offshore oil platform in the Niger Delta in 1998. Bowoto was shot during the protest; two other protesters were killed. International business expert Michael Watts, professor at the University of California at Berkeley, is among the expert witnesses testifying in the case.
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