Damages sought against a multinational resources company dramatically jumped.
A compensation claim against BHP Group recently rose 620 per cent to 36 billion Pounds (A$65.3B) including interest.
Lawyers confirmed the number of class action claimants also tripled to 700,000 against the proponent’s alleged role in the 2015 Samarco dam collapse in Minas Gerais. They accused the company of failing to come to the table.
“By failing to enter into a negotiated settlement of these proceedings in 2018 after they were brought, as well as failing to pay adequate compensation in Brazil, the number of claimants has more than tripled to over 700,000,” Pogust Goodhead CEO Tom Goodhead said according to Reuters.
However, BHP defended its actions and questioned the validity of additional damages sought.
“BHP will continue to defend the United Kingdom group action and denies the claims in their entirety. The UK claim is at a preliminary stage with full details of claim yet to be provided and no damages quantified for most of the claims,” a spokesperson said according to Bloomberg News.
Failing mine infrastructure allegedly caused a major mudslide that killed at least 19 people. Some 28 individuals, including five children and 13 mine workers, were still missing at the time of publication.
Maurice Blackburn is also advising alleged victims on the class action.