Monthly Archives: February 2011

Alien Tort Statute Update: Pfizer Settles Suit with Nigerian Plaintiffs

Earlier today, the District Court for the Southern District of New York entered an order dismissing, with prejudice, plaintiffs’ claims in Abdullahi v. Pfizer, 01-cv-8118 (S.D.N.Y.). The case involved allegations that Pfizer conducted nonconsensual testing of Trovan, an experimental drug, during a meningitis outbreak in Nigeria in 1996.  Earlier this month, plaintiffs and Pfizer had filed a stipulation of dismissal after the parties reached an agreement to settle all claims.

The Nigerian plaintiffs had originally filed suit in 2001,… More

Podcast on Recent Legal Developments in the Field of Corporate Social Responsibility

Last week, Sarah Altschuller was interviewed on Capital Thinking, an internet radio program on VoiceAmerica Business Network. During the interview, she addressed several recent legal developments in the field of corporate social responsibility, including the Dodd-Frank provisions on conflict minerals and disclosure of payments to governments, as well as the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act.… More

Stakeholders Call For Hotels and Airlines to Address Human Trafficking Concerns

This year’s Super Bowl, held on February 6, provided advocates with an opportunity to shine a spotlight on one of the darkest sides of major sporting events: the trafficking of sex workers. At an anti-trafficking event held in January, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott stated that “the Super Bowl is one of the biggest human trafficking events in the United States.”

When large numbers of people attend events like the Super Bowl,… More

The Global Network Initiative: Confronting Human Rights Challenges in the Information & Communications Technology Sector

The Global Network Initiative ("GNI") released its first annual report (.pdf) last month. This is a milestone worth celebrating by all who continue to believe in the power of the information and communications technology ("ICT") sector to promote freedom and development (and development as freedom) worldwide.

Although the changes wrought in the last decade by the proliferation of ICT companies to the furthest reaches of the globe are almost unimaginable,… More

Alien Tort Statute Update: Second Circuit Denies Petition for Rehearing En Banc in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum

On February 4, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals denied plaintiffs’ petition for a rehearing en banc in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum, 621 F.3d 111 (2d Cir. 2010).  Plaintiffs filed the petition after the Second Circuit held, in a controversial September 2010 decision, that corporations cannot be properly sued under the Alien Tort Statute (“ATS”) for violations of customary international law.… More

Conflict Minerals and Payments to Governments: SEC Extends Time Period for Comments on Proposed Rules

The Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") has extended the time period for comments on proposed rules issued pursuant to Section 1502 (conflict minerals) and Section 1504 (disclosure of payments to governments) of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.  The proposed rules are now open for comment until March 2, 2011.

The extension applies to rules proposed pursuant to: