Underreported: The Chiquita Papers

Thursday, April 14, 2011

It has long been known that Chiquita Brands International made controversial payments to violent guerilla and paramilitary groups in Columbia in the 1990s and 2000s. The company was fined $25 million dollars in a 2007 plea-agreement for making payments to AUC, which was designated as a terrorist group by the US State Department in 2001. Michael Evans, chief researcher on Colombia at the National Security Archive, explains that a newly released trove of internal Chiquita memos obtained by the National Security Archive suggest that, contrary to company claims that the money was extorted, the payments often resulted in direct benefits for the banana giant.


Michael Evans

Comments [3]

Daniel Holt from NYC

From a legal standpoint, a key question is whether the government uncovered admissible evidence of direct benefits for Chiquita. The documents that Evans discusses may be unambiguous but that doesn't mean they'd be admissible in court. It may well be that the prosecutors knew that Chiquita received benefits but that they didn't have admissible evidence that would have allowed them to prove it in court.

Apr. 14 2011 01:42 PM

chiquita was the narcotrafficker/paramilitary group 100 years ago in colombia and most of that region. that's long known. that they can remix their association now and still help destabilize the area is amazing.

Apr. 14 2011 01:35 PM
Watching Bananas from Elizabeth NJ

Paying the AUC to 'watch their bananas' sounds so benevolent.
What about removing entire central-american governments UNTIL today..!? (See Honduras.)

Their "banana-practices" have records since the decade of 1890.

Just ask their P.R. representatives (a.k.a. US ambassadors for these 'banana-republics' --in Honduras for example is Hugo Llorens--.

Apr. 14 2011 01:08 PM

Leave a Comment

Email addresses are required but never displayed.

Get the WNYC Morning Brief in your inbox.
We'll send you our top 5 stories every day, plus breaking news and weather.