- Exxon Mobil Houston, Texas; Source: Wikimedia Commons
Exxon Mobil has a contract with the Indonesian government to explore, extract and process gas in the province of Aceh. For this purpose the energy company hired military personnel as private security. According to the 15 plaintiffs the soldiers killed family members and subjected others to forms of brutality and cruelty amounting to torture. The villagers also claim that Exxon Mobil hired the soldiers despite knowing of past human rights abuses by Indonesia's army.
Exxon Mobil and the Indonesian government have opposed the lawsuit. A spokesman of Exxon Mobil said that the claims were baseless and that the company condemns human rights violations in any form.
Judge Brett Kavanaugh dissented from the decision claiming that the questioned federal law, the Alien Tort State, could only be applied to actions committed in the United States. Kavanaugh was appointed by George W. Bush. It is expected that the case will reach the Supreme Court.