Chiquita Brands International faces a lawsuit from the family of an American geologist murdered by the FARC in Colombia, who accuse the banana giant of supporting the country’s largest guerrilla group, Bloomberg reported Thursday.
In a complaint filed Thursday in Washington by Jane Pescatore Sparrow’s estate, Chiquita is accused of aiding and abetting in the murder of her brother geologist Frank Pescatore and of providing support and resources to the terrorist organization. The banana company is accused of paying the FARC for protection and supplying them with weapons from 1989 to 1997.
“This material support included funds, weapons, and other critical support that enabled and facilitated FARC’s ability to maintain an ongoing terror campaign against American and Colombian interests and which resulted in the kidnapping and murder of Frank Thomas Pescatore Jr.,” according to the complaint.
The complaint filed Thursday was done so by the husband of the late Jane Pescatore Sparrow. Another claim was filed in 2009 on behalf of other family members of the late geologist.
Chiquita is also being sued in Florida by the family of five American missionaries who were kidnapped in Colombia in 1993 and eventually murdered, allegedly by the FARC.
In response to the latest case the company’s spokesman Ed Loyd said that the allegations “make no sense” and that no evidence exists to back up the claims that Chiquita supported the guerrilla group which was responsible for the deaths of the U.S. citizen.
In March 2007, Chiquita was fined $25 million after pleading guilty paying Colombian paramilitaries $1.7 million from 1997 to 2004.
At least 10 other related lawsuits have been filed against Chiquita, according to Loyd, on behalf of American and Colombian FARC victims.