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The Boston Globe

Business

Samsung faces Brazil lawsuit over labor conditions

SEOUL — Samsung Electronics Co. is facing a lawsuit from Brazil’s government, which is seeking damages for poor working conditions on the company’s assembly lines.

Labor prosecutors in Amazonas state said they are suing for $108 million because Samsung’s plant in Manaus has been exposing employees to risks of illnesses due to intense, repetitive work.

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The Manaus plant is the largest of 25 the company has around the world. It has nearly 6,000 workers and supplies Latin America with smartphones and other electronics.

Samsung said it will conduct a thorough review, adding that “We take great care to provide a workplace environment that assures the highest industry standards of health, safety, and welfare.”

Prosecutors said Brazil’s Labor Ministry verified workers perform three times more movements per minute than what is considered safe, many work 10 hours a day while standing, and more than 2,000 had health problems in 2012 related to work.

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