Court Orders Shell To Pay Nigerian Farmers Over Oil Spills

A Dutch court has ordered the Nigerian subsidiary of Shell to pay compensation over oil spills in Nigeria’s Niger Delta, a ruling which could pave the way for more cases against multinational oil firms.

The Court of Appeal in The Hague on Friday ruled that the Nigerian arm of the British-Dutch company must issue payouts over a long-running civil case involving four Nigerian farmers who were seeking compensation, and a clean-up, from the company over pollution caused by leaking oil pipelines.

It held Shell’s Nigerian subsidiary liable for two leaks that spewed oil over an area of a total of about 60 football pitches in two villages, saying that it could not be established “beyond a reasonable doubt” that saboteurs were to blame.

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