answer the questions on the discussion, please. there are 5 questions answer them clearly. see the attached file.please do not do it as Essay. I need you to answer each question by order you put the qestion and the answer under it
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Chiquita Brands: Ethical Responsibility or Illegal Action?
In the early 2000s, Chiquita Brands International, a Cincinnati based multinational
mar-keter and distributor of food products widely known for its Chiquita banana
brand found itself in the middle of a crisis in its Latin American operations. The
company was confronted by a local armed paramilitary group, the United Defense
Forces of Colombia, which attempted to extort substantial payments from the
company to help fund the groups operations. The paramilitary group made it clear
that if the company did not make the pay-ments Chiquitas employees would be at
risk. The companys managers took these threats seriously, because they believed that,
in 1995, the paramilitary group had been responsible for bombing Chiquitas
operations and murdering 17 banana workers, who had been gunned down on a
muddy soccer field.
Chiquitas mission emphasized a strong sense of ethical performance and social
respon-sibility. It stated that it wanted to help the worlds consumers broaden
mindsets about nutri-tion and bring healthy, nutritious, and convenient foods that
taste great and improve peoples lives. Therefore, it was not surprising that Chiquitas
management also wanted to protect its employees and ensure their safety while
working for the company. In a handwritten note, a Chiquita executive said that such
payments were the cost of doing business in Colombia. The company agreed to
make the payments demanded by the paramilitary group, but hid the payments
through a series of questionable accounting actions. From 1997 through 2004
Chiquita paid monthly protection payments totaling more than $ 1.7 million.
After the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack in the United States, the U. S.
Government declared the Colombian paramilitary group to be a terrorist
organization. In February 2003, a Chiquita employee informed a senior Chiquita
officer that the companys protection pay-ments were illegal under the new U. S.
terrorism laws. Chiquita officials met with their attor-neys in Washington, DC, and
were advised to stop the payments to the terrorist group. Yet the company continued
to make the protection payments, amounting to an additional $ 825,000.
In the minds of the Chiquitas executives, stopping the payments would risk the lives
of their employees. Chiquitas executives also considered but rejected the option of
withdraw-ing operations from Colombia. But in a surprising move in April 2003,
Chiquita decided to disclose to the Department of Justice that the company was still
making payments to the Colombian paramilitary group. The company told the
government that the payments were made under the threat of violence against them
and their employees.
The Justice Department informed Chiquita that these payments were illegal, yet the
company continued to make the payments. In 2007 Chiquita Brands International
pleaded guilty to one count of the criminal charge of engaging in transactions with a
designated global terrorist group and agreed to pay a $ 25 million fine.
Chiquitas troubles did not end when it settled the charges filed by the Justice Department. In 2007, new lawsuits were filed under the Alien Tort Statute, a 222- year- old
law that allows foreigners to sue a U. S. based company in American federal courts if
their claims involve violations of U. S. treaties. The lawsuit claimed that Chiquita was
responsible for the deaths of 393 victims at the hands of the Colombian terrorist
group that Chiquita funded through their payments and demanded damages of $ 20
million per victim, a total of $ 7.86 billion. The lawsuits pointed specifically to a 1997
massacre in which 49 people were tortured, dismembered, and decapitated and
another incident in 2000 in which 36 more people were killed. The principle upon
which this lawsuit is brought is that when you put money into the hands of terrorists,
when you put guns into the hands of terrorists, then you are legally responsible for
the atrocities, the murders and the tortures that those terrorists commit, said
attorney Jonathan Reiter.
Additional lawsuits were filed in 2011, where the names of 4,000 victims were
submitted, each targeting Chiquita due to the companys support of the Colombian
terrorist paramilitary group. Attorney Terry Collingsworth, who helped file the
lawsuits on behalf of the Colombians, said, A company that pays a terrorist
organization that kills thousands of people should get the capital punishment of civil
liability and be put out of business by punitive damages.
A Chiquita spokesperson responded, We reiterate that Chiquita and its employees
were victims and that the actions taken by the company were always motivated to
protect the lives of our employees and their families. Michael Mitchell, Chiquitas
director of com-munications added, Our company had been forced to make
protection payments to safe-guard our workforce. It is absolutely untrue for anyone
to suggest that these payments were made for any other purpose. Chiquita has already
been the victim of extortion in Colombia. We will not allow ourselves to become
extortion victims in the United States.
Sources: Chiquita Brands International Pleads Guilty to Making Payments to a
Designated Terrorist Organization and Agrees to Pay $ 25 Million Fine, U. S.
Department of Justice Press Release , March 19, 2007, www. justice. gov/ opa/ pr/
2007 www.justice.gov/opa/pr/2007 / March/ 07_ nsd_ 161. html
/March/07_nsd_161.html ; Colombian Families Suit Says Chiquita Liable for
Torture, Murder, CNN. com , February 14, 2007, www. cnn. com/ 2007/ US/ law/
www.cnn.com/2007/US/law/ 11/ 14/ chiquita. lawsuit ; and Chiquita Sued over
Colombian Paramilitary Payments, The Sacramento Bee , May 30, 2011, www.
1. Should Chiquita have agreed to make the payments to the terrorist group to protect
its employees? What ethical principles support your opinion?
2. Is there anything that Chiquita could have done to protect its employees
adequately without paying the terrorists?
3. Using each of the four methods of ethical reasoning, see Figure 4.6, was it ethical or
not for Chiquita to pay the terrorist organization?
4. How should Chiquita respond to the new lawsuits claiming that the company is
responsi-ble for the deaths of victims at the hands of the terrorist group the company
5. Should Chiquita be given the civil death penalty and be put out of business for
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