"Global Witness, an environmental and human rights organization, sent undercover investigators to get the scoop"
"The police drove into the village of Watwat in SUVs during a rainstorm. It was late on a July night in 2019, and they’d come through the rainforest, armed with guns and metal bars.
Men and teenage boys were dragged out of bed, beaten and thrown into the mud. Some were arrested, held for weeks and interrogated about vandalizing palm trees, according to an investigative report by the advocacy group Global Witness.
One Watwat resident told investigators that the SUVs were owned by one of the companies that runs the local plantation.
“The company has a lot of money,” she said. “They are able to give it to the police.” ...
Global Witness’s two-year investigation is a rare behind-the-scenes look at the corruption, labor abuses and destructive environmental practices in an industry that is clearing carbon-rich rainforests and emitting greenhouse gases at a rate that has become a growing concern for climate scientists. The world’s most common vegetable oil has spawned vast fortunes, while coming under scrutiny for its labor practices and environmental impact."