Greenpeace has filed a lawsuit against Ketchum and its client Dow Chemical, as well as Dezenhall Resources (formerly Nichols Dezenhall) and its client Sasol North America (formerly CONDEA Vista). The organization alleges that the PR firms and their clients hired a private security firm, Beckett Brown International (BBI), and used “unlawful means” to gather information about the organization and used it to stifle their education campaign.
The lawsuit alleges that BBI was paid a total of $325,000 for their services.
Ketchum spokesperson Jackie Burton told O’Dwyer’s: “We understand that a complaint has been filed. We have not formally received the papers yet and, therefore, cannot speak to any of the specifics in the complaint. We will review it thoroughly and address it in the appropriate venue. As a company that views integrity as fundamental to our values, we take this matter seriously.”
Dow Chemical also told PRWeek that they could not comment.
Fenton Communications, which worked with Greenpeace and another organization, National Environmental Trust, from 1998 to 2000, is also mentioned in the lawsuit as a BBI target.
Greenpeace has launched a website about the lawsuit.