Nun Sues Lead Smelter for Peruvian Children

     ST. LOUIS (CN) – Nearly 100 children have been hurt by lead poisoning from emissions from Doe Run Resources’ plant in La Oroya, Peru, a U.S. nun claims in City Court.
     Click here to read Courthouse News’ Environmental Law Review.
     Sister Kate Reid and Megan Heeney sued the company as next friends of the 95 children who say they suffer from a variety of effects from the lead exposure.
     Lead poisoning injures the nervous system, causing learning and behavioral disorders, anemia, fatigue, hypertension and spontaneous abortions.
     Sister Kate claims scientists at the St. Louis University School of Public Health have concluded that the conditions in La Oroya constitute a public health crisis that poses health risks for its entire population, especially infants and young children.
     The study showed that 99 percent of the children in La Oroya have blood levels greater than 10 ug/Dl., which is considered to be dangerous and to cause permanent injuries, according to the complaint.
     Reid and Heeney filed similar complaints against Doe Run in October 2007 and in August 2008, on behalf of 154 other total children.
     The plant was stripped of its environmental certification by an independent auditor in April 2008.
     The plaintiffs seek actual and punitive damages.
     They are represented by Kristine Kraft, with Schlichter, Bogard & Denton.
     Also named as defendants are DR Acquisition Corp., Renco Holdings, and corporate defendants’ officers Marvin Kaiser, Albert Neil, Jeffrey Zelms, Theodore Fox III, Daniel Vornberg and Ira Rennert.

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