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Source of toxic sludge flood sued for damages in 30 cases

The Hungarian Aluminum Production and Trading Company (MAL) is being sued for damages in 30 court cases, but the company's liability for an industrial disaster last October has not been established in a single one, György Ruttner, the company's counsel, told journalists on Tuesday, after a meeting of an ad hoc committee in Parliament established to investigate the catastrophe.

Three towns in western Hungary were flooded by toxic red sludge after a reservoir at MAL's alumina plant burst on October 4, 2010. The disaster killed ten people and damaged 200 homes.

It is still too early to determine liability in the disaster, Ruttner said.

Combined claims of HUF 6 billion have been made against the company, of which HUF 5.2 billion are exaggerated, he said, answering a question.