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Compensation case against South African miners thrown out

Published by MAC on 2004-11-30

Compensation case against South African miners thrown out

Metal Bulletin

30 November 2004

Johannesburg - A New York judge has thrown out a court case seeking $20 billion in compensation from major multinationals firms, including Anglo American and Gold Fields, who allegedly benefited and supported apartheid-era South Africa.

Controversial class-action lawyer Ed Fagan brought the legal action to court and accused more than 30 firms of supporting the apartheid state.

But the ruling by US district judge John Sprizzo said the plaintiffs had not proved that the companies broke international law.

"Although it is clear that the actions of the apartheid regime were repugnant, and that the decision of the defendants to do business with that regime may have been morally suspect," Judge Sprizzo said in his ruling late on November 29

"It is this court's job to apply the law and not some normative or moral ideal."

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