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

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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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