Noticia

Harvard Law mum on invite to controversial lawyer

Watch Dog 17/04/2015

Watch Dog

Watch Dog

Steven Donziger is an outspoken, media-savvy lawyer who, according to a 485-page ruling from a federal judge, committed massive fraud in a highly charged case against oil giant Chevron.

He’s also been invited as a featured panelist at Harvard Law School on Friday, which is raising some eyebrows.

“I don’t know (Donziger) and I’m sorry these activities occurred,” said Ronald D. Rotunda, Distinguished Professor of Jurisprudence who teaches legal ethics at Chapman University. “I just couldn’t imagine inviting him to my class and say, this guy has something worthwhile to tell you.”

The Institute for Global Law and Policy at Harvard Law School is the main sponsor of Friday’s event, billed as “The Next Chapter in the Chevron/Ecuador Litigation: Insider perspectives and implications for the future of transnational corporate liability.”

One of six listed speakers, Donziger is described in the event’s Facebook invitation as “a U.S. lawyer for the affected communities and the primary target of Chevron’s retaliation campaign.”

“Occasionally people come to speak to say, mea culpa,” Rotunda said. “But it doesn’t sound like he’s going to be coming in order to warn people to not get off the straight and narrow. I just have no idea why they would think this is a useful exercise.”

Watchdog.org sent an email and left multiple voicemail messages with officials at the Institute for Global Law and Policy, asking why Donziger was invited and whether he was being paid or had his travel expenses picked up, but did not receive any response.

A message left on Donziger’s Facebook page asking to comment about this story also went unreturned.

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