You can now read 10 articles in a month for free on BostonGlobe.com. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

The Boston Globe

Lifestyle

Q&A

Fighting for human rights on a global front

Twenty years ago, when Katie Redford was in law school, she wrote a paper suggesting the use of an ancient federal statute to fight contemporary human rights abuses by an American corporation doing business in Burma. Her interest in the subject resulted in her work on John Doe v. Unocal Corp, the first time the US courts agreed to consider a lawsuit against an American company accused of human rights abuses abroad. Unocal, a California oil company, was part owner of a pipeline project in Burma, where the military regime guarding the site allegedly raped, tortured, and killed villagers. In 2005, Unocal agreed to settle the case. Redford, who is from Wellesley, filed a brief in support of a similar case argued last week before the US Supreme Court. Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum (Shell) is the first case the Supreme Court is hearing this session.

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week