"Exxon Accused of Pressuring Witnesses in Climate Fraud Case"

"New York's attorney general wants a judge to stop the oil giant from subpoenaing documents from investors, saying it would 'discourage them from testifying'. "

"Prosecutors in New York are accusing ExxonMobil of trying to discourage potential witnesses from testifying about whether the oil giant misled investors over the costs it may face from future climate regulations. They're asking a judge to block Exxon from making what they describe as 'unreasonable' and extensive requests for documents from the witnesses.

New court filings reveal that Exxon sent letters to a group of investment advisers and shareholder activists who prosecutors want to put on the stand, informing them they will be subject to subpoenas from the company seeking documents relevant to the case if they choose to testify.

Because of their roles investing in and engaging with Exxon over climate change, these witnesses' testimony could prove critical to the state's case.

With opening statements scheduled to begin Oct. 23, a lawyer in New York Attorney General Letitia James's office wrote that the request would 'impose disproportionate burdens on these witnesses in a transparent attempt to discourage them from testifying voluntarily, and threatening to upend the trial schedule.'"

Nicholas Kusnetz and David Hasemyer report for InsideClimate News August 6, 2019.

Source: InsideClimate News, 08/08/2019