Lawsuit filed against Nestle Three citizens of...

Lawsuit filed

against Nestle

Three citizens of the West African nation of Mali are suing Nestle

SA, Archer Daniels Midland Co. and Cargill Inc., alleging the firms

and their subsidiaries benefited from child slave labor at cocoa bean

plantations in Ivory Coast.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles on

Thursday, was brought on behalf of three unnamed "John Doe"

plaintiffs identified as former child slaves.

The complaint, which alleged violations of U.S. federal laws

against slavery, trafficking, forced labor and torture, among others,

seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages. The case also

seeks class-action status.

San Francisco-based Global Exchange, a nonprofit international

human rights organization, and International Labor Rights Fund, a

Washington, D.C.-based human rights group, filed the lawsuit.

According to Thursday's lawsuit, the plaintiffs were each forced

from their homes in Mali in 1996 while still in their teens to toil

without pay at cocoa bean plantations in the neighboring nation of

Ivory Coast.

A spokeswoman for Nestle SA subsidiary Nestle USA Inc. in Glendale

said Thursday the company had no immediate comment because it had yet

to see the complaint.

Victims file lawsuit against Metrolink

Another lawsuit was filed today against Metrolink on behalf of 12

people who were injured in the Jan. 26 commuter train crash in

Glendale.

The complaint filed in Los Angeles Superior Court alleges

negligence and dangerous condition of public property.

According to the suit, each passenger filed a claim for damages --

a required precursor to a lawsuit -- with the transit agency on May

12. Metrolink formally rejected each claim, the suit states.

The plaintiffs are asking for general and special damages.

The plaintiffs are: Michelle Awagah, Catherine Fransen, Trudy

Logan-Sturoke, David Toledo, Sharon Holbert, Hemlata Thomas, Roger

Craig, Richard Myles, Willa Mae Robinson, Arleen Faigao and Victoria

Olguin of Ventura County, and Jimmy Valentine of Los Angeles County.

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