Chevron Can Depose Plaintiffs Attorney Who Acted as 'Political Operative,' Judge Rules

Outtakes that the director of the documentary Crude was ordered to produce to Chevron Corp. helped fuel the oil company’s argument that a New York lawyer acting on behalf of Ecuadorian plaintiffs in the environmental case could and should be deposed despite his claims of privilege.

Because attorney Steve Donziger acted primarily as a “political operative,” he must make himself available for deposition, a federal judge ruled in an order (PDF) last week in the Southern District of New York case.

A link to the ruling is provided by the Arts Beat blog of the New York Times.

Additional coverage:

ABAJournal.com (Sept. 2009): “Parties in $27B Environmental Case Fight Video With Video”

ABAJournal.com (May 2010): “Fed’l Judge Subpoenas Raw Footage from ‘Crude’ Documentary About Chevron Suit”

American Lawyer: “Court Allows Chevron to Depose Lead Plaintiffs Lawyer in Ecuador Case”

Bloomberg: “Chevron Allowed to Subpoena Ecuadoreans’ Lawyer in Amazon Pollution Case”

Dow Jones Newswires: “US Judge Orders Deposition Of Plaintiffs’ Advisor In Chevron Case”

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