Today, for our occasional Food Monday series, we’re exploring another chapter in the long and sordid story of the banana. Chiquita Brands International paid a criminal fine of $25 million to the U.S. Justice Department for paying the AUC, the right-wing paramilitary force in Colombia, designated a terrorist group by the U.S. Government. Last month, a federal judge in Florida allowed a lawsuit to proceed against Chiquita Brands International that alleges the American food giant’s payments led to the deaths of thousands of banana workers and civilians. Before the break, we heard from one of the lead attorneys for the plaintiffs in the suit. Now it’s the defense’s turn.
Attorney John Hall, with the law firm Covington and Burling, represents Chiquita in the lawsuit and outlines the company's defense.