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West Indies: 2006 complaint for chlordecone poisoning could be prescribed

2021-01-21T22:49:40.150Z

A complaint filed 14 years ago for chlordecone poisoning by associations from Martinique and Guadeloupe could fall under the prescription, they said Thursday after a hearing at the TGI in Paris. Three associations from Martinique and four from Guadeloupe were heard on Wednesday and Thursday by videoconference by two investigating judges from the health center of the TGI in Paris, 14 years after th



A complaint filed 14 years ago for chlordecone poisoning by associations from Martinique and Guadeloupe could fall under the prescription, they said Thursday after a hearing at the TGI in Paris.

Three associations from Martinique and four from Guadeloupe were heard on Wednesday and Thursday by videoconference by two investigating judges from the health center of the TGI in Paris, 14 years after the filing of their complaint for

"endangering the life of" others ”.

Read also: West Indies: the State, "first responsible" for chlordecone pollution

They had filed a complaint in 2006 against the poisoning of their islands with chlordecone, a pesticide banned in France in 1990 but which continued to be authorized in the banana fields of Martinique and Guadeloupe by ministerial exemption until 1993. More than 90% of the adult population in Guadeloupe and Martinique is contaminated by chlordecone, according to Public Health France, and the West Indian populations have one of the highest incidence rate of prostate cancer in the world.

The examining magistrates informed the associations that evidence had disappeared and that the file could be under the blow of a limitation, the Martinican associations declared to the local media at the end of the hearing.

“One of the investigating judges”

spoke of

“legal and de facto obstacles to the consequences of trials”

while remaining

“open for a few more weeks to the demonstration, by us lawyers, that there could be no prescription”

, declared to AFP Harry Durimel, lawyer of the Guadeloupe civil parties.

"It's been 14 years that it hangs out in their courts and today we are told that the facts are prescribed?

It's not our

fault

! ”

Said Pascal Tourbillon, representing ASSAUPAMAR (the Association for the Safeguarding of Martinican Heritage) at the microphone of RCI radio.

Me Louis Boutrin, the lawyer for the Association for Urban Ecology based in Martinique, asks for his part that we close as quickly as possible the instruction to proceed to indictments and specifies that

"there is today, reports from the DGCCRF (General Directorate for Competition, Consumption and Fraud Control) which have not been taken into account, which are offenses committed in 2006 and which make it possible to push back the limits of the prescription".

“In French law, when the facts are concealed, the limitation period does not run until the facts are revealed.

However, we are told that research continues to indisputably establish the link between prostate cancer and chlordecone, ”

adds Me Durimel.

The associations mobilized in Martinique, AMSES (Medical Association for the Protection of the Environment and Health), ASSAUPAMAR and the Association for Urban Ecology, plan to seize the European courts, in particular the European Court of Human Rights. man, if the complaint is unsuccessful.

Source: lefigaro

All business articles on 2021-01-21

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