Class Action Lawsuit Brought by Families of Congolese Miners Against Major Tech Companies
A lawsuit has been filed against Apple, Alphabet (parent company of Google), Dell, Microsoft, and Tesla for “knowingly benefiting from and aiding and abetting the cruel and brutal use of young children in Democratic Republic of Congo (“DRC”)to mine cobalt, a key component of every rechargeable lithium-ion battery used in the electronic devices these companies manufacture.”
The modern tech boom brought on a new wave of brutal exploitation to the people of the DRC. The DRC is particularly rich in many minerals needed for the manufacture of the various products made by Defendants Apple, Alphabet,Dell, Microsoft, and Tesla. The DRC is rich in tin, copper, tungsten, gold, and tantalum, but these minerals are widely available in other places. On the other hand, approximately two-thirds of the global supply of cobalt is mined in the “copper belt” region of Haut-Katanga and Lualaba Provinces in the DRC. Cobalt is a key component of every rechargeable lithium-ion battery in all of the gadgets made by Defendants and all other tech and electric car companies in the world, that has brought on the latest wave of cruel exploitation fueled by greed, corruption and indifference to a population of powerless, starving Congolese people.
An op-ed in The Guardian by Professor Siddharth Kara (one of the expert witnesses for the plaintiffs) details a personal account of what he saw in the Congo.
Let’s see if we can keep up with Bloomberg’s docket application.