By Tom Precious
ALBANY -- Oil giant Chevron is accusing state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli of ethical violations in his role as sole trustee of the $150 billion state pension system in trying to block a development deal in Ecuador. Included among the allegations and footnotes is a claim that DiNapoli made his opposition to the project based, in part, on campaign donations from individuals involved in trying to stop the deal.
Here is the complaint from Chevron's lawyers filed today with a state ethics agency.
Here is the response from DiNapoli: "This is a baseless attempt by big oil to intimidate me and it won’t work. The allegations are without merit. Since 2004, the New York State Common Retirement Fund, along with dozens of leading investors worldwide, has called on Chevron to settle its nearly two-decade-long legal battle for polluting the Amazon. Chevron refuses. This effort is about protecting shareholder value and fulfilling my fiduciary responsibility to the New York State Common Retirement Fund. Instead of owning up to its corporate responsibility, time and again Chevron has denied its responsibility, distorted the facts and ignored the ruling of a court of law. I am confident that JCOPE will see through this blatant attempt to intimidate responsible shareholders who dare to question Chevron’s actions."