Firm sued over Ivory Coast toxic waste deaths

17th October 2006, Comments 0 comments

17 October 2006, AMSTERDAM — A Dutch lawyer has lodged a compensation claim against an Amstelveen company demanding millions of euros in damages for the victims of the death ship Probo Koala.

17 October 2006

AMSTERDAM — A Dutch lawyer has lodged a compensation claim against an Amstelveen company demanding millions of euros in damages for the victims of the death ship Probo Koala.

The ship — which was leased by the Amstelveen firm Trafigura — dumped a large amount of toxic waste in the port of Abidjan in the Ivory Coast in August.

Thousands of people fell ill and 10 victims were killed.

Dutch lawyer Bob van der Goen said on Monday he would lodge a compensation claim on behalf of the victims.

Goen said Trafigura was primarily responsible for the environmental disaster.

"The waste was drained by a firm in the Ivory Coast, but Trafigura ensured the poisonous waste was taken there," he said.

"It knew very well that the waste was poisonous. Trafigura is then definitely liable."
 
Goen said the damages claim could amount to millions of euros.

"There were a lot of victims," he said, adding that Trafigura is a very large firm with turnover valued at billions of euros.
 
"That's where we will set our sights first and then look at whether other organisations can be held liable," Chen said.

The lawyer was implicitly referring to the Amsterdam City Council and the Dutch state.
 
The Probo Koala is currently in Estonia and has been granted permission by Estonian authorities to put to sea. Its destination is unknown.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2006]

Subject: Dutch news

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