Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 6

Case 0:08-md-01916-KAM Document 1809 Entered on FLSD Docket 02/24/2018 Page 1 of 6

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT


SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF FLORIDA

Case No. 08-md-01916-KAM

IN RE: CHIQUITA BRANDS INTERNATIONAL, INC.,


ALIEN TORT STATUTE AND SHAREHOLDER
DERIVATIVE LITIGATION
____________________________________________/

This Document Relates To:

ATS ACTIONS:
____________________________________________/

Plaintiffs' Oppositon to Plaintiffs' Attorney James Green's Motion


for Leave to Depose Two Incarcerated Witnesses (D.E. 1808)

The Plaintiffs represented by undersigned counsel oppose the Motion filed by Attorney

James Green,1 D.E. 1808, because it seeks to introduce more tainted evidence into this case, and

is in furtherance of the RICO conspiracy outlined in Drummond v. Collingsworth, 15-cv-506-RDP

(NDAL). Undersigned counsel has no interest in participating in this deposition, or sharing in the

costs as ordered by the Court on August 3, 2015.2 D.E. 865.

Both Mr. Mancuso Gomez and Mr. Tovar Pupo are clearly Attorney Collingsworth's

witnesses. In May of 2008, Mancuso Gomez appeared with Mr. Collingworth on "60 Minutes,"

where Mancuso Gomez accused not only Chiquita of paying the AUC, but also the Dole Food

1
Mr. Scarola was wise to keep his fingerprints off of this. Mr. Green is co-counsel with him in
case 08-80508-CIV-MARRA.
2
In this Order, the Court ordered the parties to vote on who would conduct each deposition, based
on the number of "cases" represented by each counsel. Each case was defined as a death or injury
to a person, rather than by the number of claims filed by family members in each case. To date,
the other plaintiffs' counsel have never disclosed the total number of cases they represent, or ever
included me in any of their votes, if the voting even occurs. I have approximately 50% of the total
cases according to this calculation, but don't know if this is a majoriyy. Mr. Green didn't confer
with me on this motion, as required by Local Rule 7.1, although his caption states that it applies to
"All ATS Cases." Clearly it does, since it strengthens Chiquita's arguments about witness bribery,
which harms all of the plaintiffs.
1
Case 0:08-md-01916-KAM Document 1809 Entered on FLSD Docket 02/24/2018 Page 2 of 6

company. A transcript of the show3 appears online at https://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-price-

of-bananas/. According to the transcript:

"Was Chiquita the only American company that paid you?" Kroft asks Mancuso.

"All companies in the banana region paid. For instance, there was Dole and Del Monte,
which I believe are U.S. companies," Mancuso claims.

Both Dole Food Company and Fresh Del Monte Produce, which is not affiliated with Del
Monte Foods, have issued statements strongly denying that they made payments to the
paramilitaries. Fresh Del Monte Produce said its Colombian operation is "limited to a sales
office which purchases bananas from independent growers."

"Dole and Del Monte say they never paid you any money," Kroft tells Mancuso.

"Chiquita has been honest by acknowledging the reality of the conflict and the payments
that it made; the others also made payments, not only international companies, but also the
national companies in the region," Mancuso says.

"So you're saying Dole and Del Monte are lying?" Kroft asks.

"I'm saying they all paid," Mancuso says.

Mancuso has been indicted in the U.S. for smuggling 17 tons of cocaine into the country.
He said he was more than willing to tell U.S prosecutors anything they want to know.

"Has anyone come down here from the United States to talk to you about Dole, or to talk
to you about Del Monte or any other companies?" Kroft asks.

"No one has come from the Department of Justice of the United States to talk to us,"
Mancuso says. "I am taking the opportunity to invite the Department of State and the
Department of Justice, so that they can come and so I can tell them all that they want to
know from us."

"And you would name names?" Kroft asks.

"Certainly, I would do so," Mancuso says.

So far, the only company that has been charged with paying money to terrorists in
Colombia is the one that turned itself in.

"Do you think if you hadn't gone to the Justice Department and disclosed the situation, that
anything would've happened to you?" Kroft asks.

3
The video itself doesn't appear to be online.
2
Case 0:08-md-01916-KAM Document 1809 Entered on FLSD Docket 02/24/2018 Page 3 of 6

"Well, Mr. Kroft, if we hadn't gone to the Justice Department, we probably would not be
here talking about this whole issue. No one would know about this," Aguirre says.

Since our story aired, Salvatore Mancuso has been extradited to the U.S. to face drug
charges, and the Colombian government has stepped up its investigation of Dole. Two
jailed paramilitary leaders have corroborated Mancuso's claims that they received
protection money from the company.

Id. at 3-4. The Dole case was dismissed after one of Collingsworth's witnesses, Adolfo Enrique

Guevara Cantillo, pulled out his cell phone during his deposition and read a text message from

Ivan Otero4 offering him money to testify that Dole paid the AUC, which Mr. Guevara Cantillo

believed wasn't true. Undersigned counsel has already filed parts of this tesimony in the record,

available as Exhibit 2 to D.E. 1719. Mr. Guevara Cantillo said:

A Well, I'm thinking this because of what


3 was transmitted to me. For me to say things or
4 state things that weren't so, against the Dole
5 Company, to -- so that it would be favorable to him
6 in the process and he could win a lawsuit.
7 That's what he proposed to me.
8 Q Can you -- can you -- that -- that's a
9 very serious statement.
10 Can you tell me the words that he used
11 then?
12 MS. CHAMPION: Permission to object, Your
13 Honor.
14 JUDGE DEL VILLAR DELGADO: (Speaking
15 Spanish.)
16 MS. CHAMPION: Counsel is testifying.
17 His characterization is not part of the question.
18 THE DEPONENT: No, no, no. I'm a very
19 serious person too. And I'm not going to talk
20 about or do something that I cannot show or prove.
21 He went to offer this to me.
22 And I'm going to state it even more
Page 73
1 clearly for you, so you can see how serious this
2 is. He offered me money so that I could involve or
4
Mr. Otero was one of the go-betweens for witness payments in the instant Chiquita case, the
various Drummond cases, and also Dole. Otero also had a dual role, as counsel for various
paramilitaries in their depositions in Drummond, and as co-counsel to Collingsworth and Conrad
& Scherer in the same case.
3
Case 0:08-md-01916-KAM Document 1809 Entered on FLSD Docket 02/24/2018 Page 4 of 6

3 incriminate Dole in something that I cannot attest


4 to or that I cannot prove and nobody -- and, in
5 fact, nobody can prove.
6 It cannot be proven. Because my
7 commander, Commander 40, never -- never --- had any
8 type of meeting that dealt with matters regarding
9 his command with any front commander, and much less
10 so with people of lower ranks.
11 So -- so I will return and I will
12 continue to affirm that Mr. Otero went to ask for
13 my collaboration with -- went to offer me money --
14 (Lead interpreter and deponent converse in
15 Spanish.)
16 THE DEPONENT: -- in this -- in this
17 procedure, in the case that it would be a positive
18 results.

Id. at 72-73. It is also doubtful that Mr. Mancuso Gomez has personal knowledge of Chiquita's

involvement with the AUC, although he could probably be qualified as an expert on drug

trafficking. Like Mr. Hasbun Mendoza and the other tainted witnesses, Mancuso Gomez will only

open the door for Chiquita to distract the jury with the witness bribery problem.5

Mr. Collingsworth's second witness, Rodrigo Tovar Pupo, was a central figure in the

Drummond RICO conspiracy, although there is no reason to believe Tovar Pupo did anything

wrong himself. Several paramilitary witnesses bribed by Collingsworth and Conrad & Scherer,

LLP claimed that Tovar Pupo was personally paid millions of dollars in cash by Drummond

employee James Atkins. No documentary evidence of these payments was ever found after more

5
I was contacted once by email by Mancuso Gomez' attorney, but never spoke to her on the phone,
and produced this information in response to the Courts' order to fully disclose the evidence of
witness bribery. See D.E. 771. ("I was contacted by Beatriz Quintero, the lawyer for Salvatore
Mancuso, in late 2013. At first I did not know who she represented. She said she represented
various members of the AUC. She asked me if Mr. Mancuso would be called as a witness, and I
replied that he probably would. I will produce my email to Ms Quintero if I can find it. I have not
had any other communications with Mr. Mancuso or Ms. Quintero. Since Mr. Mancuso appeared
on 60 Minutes with Mr. Collingsworth, and accused Dole of paying the AUC, I presume that Mr.
Collingsworth has been communicating with him.") The court may recall that Mr. Simons
contacted the court's chambers ex parte to ask the Court strike my response from the record.
4
Case 0:08-md-01916-KAM Document 1809 Entered on FLSD Docket 02/24/2018 Page 5 of 6

than 10 years of litigation. Only Collingsworth's payments to the AUC were proven in that case.

One of the sources of the payments was Albert van Bilderbeek, a RICO co-defendant whose

brother Hendrik is serving a lengthy prison sentence for laundering money for the AUC. It appears

that Collingsworth and Conrad & Scherer received money from AUC money launderers and used

it to pay imprisoned AUC members to fabricate a case against Drummond, with no other evidence.

This is a long story and there's no reason for the court to get sidetracked with it. Undersigned

counsel's interest is to stay out of the bribery and minimize it if possible.

In addition, I have known Mr. Tovar Pupo's attorney David Zapp for more than ten years

from other cases, and am quite sure he will advise his client to invoke his right to remain silent. I

asked him about this years ago and he said Rodigo Tovar wouldn't testify.

Conclusion

For the foregoing reasons, the plaintiffs represented by undersigned counsel oppose this

testimony, which harms their cases and is only evidence that Mr. Collingsworth and his co-

conspirators remain undeterred.

Respectfully submitted,

/s/ Paul Wolf


______________
Paul Wolf, CO Bar 42107
Attorney for Plaintiffs
PO Box 46213
Denver, CO 80201
(202) 431-6986
paulwolf@yahoo.com
fax: n/a

February 24, 2018

Certificate of Service

5
Case 0:08-md-01916-KAM Document 1809 Entered on FLSD Docket 02/24/2018 Page 6 of 6

I hereby certify that on this 24th day of February, 2018, I filed the foregoing document
with the Clerk of the Court using the Court's Electronic Case Filing (ECF) system, which will send
electronic notices to all persons entitled to receive them.

/s/ Paul Wolf


______________
Paul Wolf