India Seeks Extradition of Ex-Chief of Union Carbide; Accused Found Living at Home in Hamptons

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), June 10, 2010 | Go to article overview
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India Seeks Extradition of Ex-Chief of Union Carbide; Accused Found Living at Home in Hamptons


Byline: Ashish Kumar Sen, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Indian authorities who want the extradition of former Union Carbide chief Warren Anderson, the primary accused and declared absconder in the Bhopal gas leak case, wouldn't have to search too hard for him: He reportedly has been living in the Hamptons in the years since the world's worst industrial accident killed 15,000 and injured 500,000.

Greenpeace activist Casey Harrell in 2002 tracked down Mr. Anderson to a home in Bridgehampton, N.Y., and confronted him about the Bhopal disaster. He had no comment and ran inside his house, Mr. Harrell said. He's not hiding at all, as there is no pressure on or from the U.S. government to find him.

Activists who have visited Mr. Anderson's New York state home in recent months say he still lives there. Mr. Anderson also owns a home in Vero Beach, Fla.

An Indian court on Monday convicted seven surviving former managers of Union Carbide Corp.'s Indian subsidiary of negligent homicide and sentenced them to two years in prison each for their part in the gas leak.

But Mr. Anderson, who is identified as the primary defendant and an absconder by an Indian court, was not tried in absentia, sparking outrage among survivors of the world's worst industrial accident.

Indian Law Minister Veerappa Moily said this week that his government does not consider the case against Mr. Anderson closed and that the former Union Carbide official can be obtained.

In July, the chief judicial magistrate of Bhopal ordered India's Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to arrest Mr. Anderson and produce him before the court without delay.

A similar order was issued in 1992. However, the Indian government made its first extradition request to the Justice Department in 2003. The U.S. rejected the request on technical grounds. The CBI has not sought extradition of Mr. Anderson since the July order.

Justice spokeswoman Laura E. Sweeney said the department doesn't confirm or comment on matters of extradition, unless and until an individual is on the soil of the country that requested it.

Nityanand Jayaraman of the International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal, an India-based victims advocacy group, said Indian authorities have been provided information on Mr. Anderson's whereabouts but so far there has been no reaction.

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