Klity Creek polluter may not pay, lawyer fears

Lawyer Surapong Kongchantuk and Karen villagers living near Klity Creek come out of the courthouse in Kanchanaburi after hearing the Supreme Court ruling read out by the provincial court on Monday. (Photo by Piyarach Chongcharoen)

The lawyer for a group of villagers in Kanchanaburi who won a 10-year lawsuit against a mining company for polluting their land and water says he is prepared to take further legal action if the company does not pay up.

Surapong Kongchantuk, the lawyer for 151 ethnic Karen villagers living near Klity Creek in Kanchanaburi, said Tuesday he is not confident that Lead Concentrates Co will pay the 36 million baht in compensation ordered by the Supreme Court because its representatives did not even show up for the court's verdict.

The court on Monday ruled in favour of the villagers, whose lawsuit charged that the company's mining waste polluted the creek, contaminating soil and harming villagers and aquatic animals. The lead mine and treatment factory was established in 1967.

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