US lawyers sue China for TRILLIONS for ‘allowing virus outbreak to erupt before covering its tracks’ – The Sun
A GROUP of lawyers have said they are suing China for trillions of dollars for the economic damage caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
The suit, filed in Florida last month, has claimants from over 40 countries and alleges that negligence and cover-ups by the Chinese Communist Party allowed the deadly virus to break out.
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From the earliest stages of the pandemic, reports have accused the regime of harassing and detaining medics, journalists, and others who were trying to draw attention to the growing crisis.
The Chinese government also faces ongoing accusations of failing to properly record coronavirus deaths so as to downplay its eventual death toll.
The class action lawsuit is being brought by the Berman Law Group, based in Miami.
Chief strategist Jeremy Alters said: "China’s leaders must be held accountable for their actions. Our goal is to expose the truth."
While states have immunity against being sued under both US and international law, lawyers argue there are exceptions when the actions of a foreign government damages businesses within a country's borders.
One of the claimants is Lorraine Caggiano, a New York administrator who, with nine members of her family, contracted the virus after going to a wedding and lost both her father and aunt last month.
"I am not expecting money," she said.
"It is a symbolic gesture that we are fighting back."
Olivier Babylone, a 38-year-old estate agent from Croydon, South London, is also among the claimants.
"I have been financially hurt, but many people have lost their lives so I was lucky, and the NHS was fantastic.
"We need to know who is responsible."
The suit follows an announcement by President Trump that he would withhold the US's financial contribution to the World Health Organisation over perceived pro-China bias.
'CAN'T BE BUSINESS AS USUAL'
The ongoing pandemic has seen country's around the world go into lockdown and unprecedented economic damage done to the global economy.
Last month saw Congress pass a $2trillion dollar stimulus package to help businesses and the out-of-work through the turmoil.
The UK government has similarly released $424billion worth of government-backed loans, grants, and tax cuts.
This week, UK foreign secretary Dominic Raab, who is running the government while Prime Minister Boris Johnson recovers from his own bout of the virus, said it could not be "business as usual" with China once the pandemic has ended.
"We will have to ask the hard questions about how it came about and how it couldn’t have been stopped earlier," he said.
Earlier this month, Republic senator Marsha Blackburn said China should waive some of the US's $1trillion debt over the damage done by the pandemic.
"We have borrowed $2 trillion to stabilize our economy," she said.
"China will turn around and buy that debt. They’ll buy those bonds."
"They’re going to end up enriching themselves through a problem that they caused.”
The coronavirus has infected more than 2.3 million people and killed at least 160,000 globally since breaking out in December.
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