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by Nigel M Smith
December 2, 2010 8:52 AM
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Dole Ordered to Pay Up to Documentary Filmmaker

Based on an order from a Los Angeles judge, Dole Food Co. has to doll out nearly $200,000 in legal fees and costs to Swedish filmmaker Fredrik Gertten who went up against the company in a free speech case involving the release of his documentary "Bananas."

The New York Times reported that Dole had sued Gertten for showing the documentary, "despite a court ruling that the case on which the film was based had been part of a massive extortion plot against the company." Despite Dole's claims that the film was defamatory and false in its depiction of Dole's treatment of Nicaraguan banana workers and used of a banned pesticide, Superior Court Judge Ralph W. Dau ruled that Dole in suing was trying to withhold the director's right to free speech.

Dole later dropped its lawsuit after the Swedish parliament came in and denounced Dole's lawsuit as an interference with freedom of speech and threatened to hold hearings.

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