A federal judge rejected Steven Donziger’s request for a probe into alleged ties between oil giant Chevron and the team of Seward & Kissel attorneys appointed to prosecute his criminal contempt case as “way too attenuated.”

An attorney for Donziger asked U.S. District Judge Loretta A. Preska of the Southern District of New York last week to approve a judicial inquiry after research led him to believe that an unnamed Seward & Kissel partner had served on Chevron’s board, and that the firm served clients who do business with the company or its related entities. Donziger spent years fighting Chevron over environmental contamination in Ecuador.

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