In 2008, the Peruvian government divided Peru into more than 100 blocks covering 70 per cent of the country. It then sold the rights to exploitation of this precious rainforest to multinational companies. In protest, a group of indigenous people decided to occupy the airfield of the oil company Pluspetrol. They wanted to let them know they were destroying their livelihood – for years their rivers had been full of oil, and their children had died young. When a policeman is killed, a group of the indigenous men are jailed. A week by boat from their families, they have to try to clear their names in a courtroom where everything is stacked against them – including a shockingly corrupt police force. Their only hope is an impassioned defence lawyer – and an eyewitness too frightened to testify. With extraordinary access to the judicial process, we follow their plight.
The film was followed by a Q/A, with:
- Mr. Michael Christoffersen, Director of the film
- MEP Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy, Vice Chair of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety
- Ms. Leida Rijnhout, Executive director of the Northern Alliance for Sustainability (ANPED)
- Mr. Chris Vanden Bilcke, Head of UNEP’s Liaison Office to the EU in Brussels