MAC: Mines and Communities

Newmont Could Face Lawsuit in the USA

Published by MAC on 2004-08-16

Newmont Could Face Lawsuit in the USA


16 August, 2004

TEMPO Interactive, Jakarta:The Health Legal Aid Institute (LBHH) will file a lawsuit against PT Newmont Minahasa Raya mining company in the USA, where the headquarters of the company are located, if the legal process in Indonesia is considered unfair for victims of Buyat Bay's metal pollution.

LBHH founder, Iskandar Sitorus, told the Koran Tempo newspaper on Sunday (15/08)," We have studied the US legal system."

LBHH earlier filed a lawsuit against PT Newmont Minahasa Raya and the Indonesian Department of Health as they are considered responsible for the pollution cases in Buyat Bay.

In the lawsuit, LBHH is demanding PT Newmont and the Department of Health to pay Rp5 trillion as compensation for the pollution victims and the government to confiscate the assets of the two accused.

Sitorus said that the results of the investigation made by the National Police headquarters (HQ) regarding how Buyat Bay had been polluted and many pollution victims had received medical examination in hospital would be used to file a lawsuit in the US courts.

"We have strong evidence. The police just have to seek the perpetrators of this case. We only have two suspects in this matter, PT Newmont and local traditional miners," he added.

According to Sitorus, the police findings indicate that PT Newmont had received an environmental impact analysis (AMDAL) license.

"We will question as to how this license could be issued bearing in mind the mining company's waste management," he stated.

Sitorus said he doubted any statements that the waste and pollution were not related to PT Newmont as the this company was the only mining company located near Buyat Bay. (Eduardus KD/Maria Rita-Koran Tempo)

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