Environmentalist plaintiff’s trial lawyer Steven Donziger was just sentenced to six months in jail, after another finding of contempt (not directly for the actions which led to the verdict against him over litigation tactics).
As the WSJ put it: “Disbarred attorney Steven Donziger was sentenced Friday to six months in prison for contempt of court after a federal judge concluded that he willfully violated orders stemming from a three-decade-long legal crusade against Chevron Corp. over pollution in the Ecuadorean rainforest.”
“It seems that only the proverbial two-by-four between the eyes will instill in him any respect for the law,” [U.S. District Judge Loretta] Preska said.
This is the latest episode in a saga that began with a vexatious, multi-front litigation campaign, one that Energy Policy Advocates has cited to in amicus briefs filed before several federal courts in the tsunami of “climate” cases sweeping the country.
From the Southern District of New York’s earlier opinion:
An excerpt from a recent EPA amicus brief filed before the Southern District of New York:
This Court cannot sanction the use of the courts to force legislative change, and it should be especially zealous in protecting federal policies and legislation from being forced by actions taken in various state court systems. This Court has previously recognized the dangers of coordinated, multi-front litigation, such as the case that New York City has filed here and more than a dozen other municipalities have filed using the same counsel nationwide. In Chevron Corp. v. Donziger, 974 F. Supp. 2d 362, 475 (S.D.N.Y. 2014), this Court held that the defendant attorney’s “multi-front strategy thus [had as its object] to leverage the expense, risks, and burden to Chevron of defending itself in multiple jurisdictions to achieve a swift recovery, most likely by precipitating a settlement.” Justice is not served by turning a blind eye as history repeats itself with another wave of coordinated multi-front litigation, by aligned interests again targeting some of the same defendants who were targeted in Donzinger.