From the Wall Street Journal (bolds are mine):
Court cases get dismissed all the time, but rarely are dismissals as significant as the two lawsuits against Dole Food and other companies that were tossed recently by a California judge. Among other good things, the ruling is a setback for tort lawyers who troll abroad seeking dubious claims to bring in U.S. courts.
The allegations against Dole, the world’s largest fruit and vegetable producer, involved banana plantation workers in Nicaragua who alleged that exposure to the pesticide DBPC in the 1970s left them sterile. The only problem is that most of the plaintiffs had not worked at plantations and weren’t sterile. In fact, there’s no evidence that farm workers at Dole facilities were exposed to harmful levels of the chemical — which was legal and widely used at the time — or that the level of exposure they did experience even causes sterility.
“What has occurred here is not just a fraud on the court, but it is a blatant extortion of the defendants,” said Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Victoria Chaney in her oral ruling. More than 40 related cases involving thousands of plaintiffs from Honduras, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Panama and the Ivory Coast are pending in her court. And the ruling puts in doubt some $2 billion in judgments that plaintiffs lawyers have already obtained in Nicaragua.
Judge Chaney dismissed the cases “with prejudice” to prevent the plaintiffs from filing again on the same claims, and she denounced the lawyers who hatched the scheme. “This is a very sad day for me to be presiding over such a horrific situation,” said the judge, who described a “pervasive conspiracy” involving U.S. plaintiffs lawyers and corrupt Nicaraguan judges.
….. “There have been groups of medical personnel providing sham laboratory reports indicating sterility where none really exists; groups of fathers denying paternity of their own children, posing as lonely men coming into the court, saying that they had no solace in their old age because they have no children,” said the judge.
…. The ruling is especially useful as a rebuke to the torts-for-import business, whereby U.S. tort lawyers travel abroad, join with local lawyers to manufacture claims, and then engage in client recruitment practices that are blatantly illegal in the U.S. In essence, the tort bar’s goal is to import lawsuits from foreign countries where it’s nearly impossible to challenge claims on factual grounds because evidence is hard to come by.
It is no accident that this orchestrated fraud originated in Daniel Ortega’s Nicaragua. In Danny’s world, capitalism is apparently so evil that blatant theft disguised as reparations is apparently acceptable.