French Energy Giant TotalEnergies Under Investigation for Involuntary Manslaughter

French Energy Giant TotalEnergies Under Investigation for Involuntary Manslaughter

Claire Durand
2 min read

French Energy Giant Under Investigation for Potential Involuntary Manslaughter in Mozambique

TotalEnergies SE, the French energy giant, is currently under investigation by French prosecutors for potential involuntary manslaughter in connection to a 2021 jihadist attack in Mozambique. The investigation stems from a legal complaint filed last October by the families of victims and survivors. They claim that the company failed to protect its subcontractors and neglected to provide fuel for evacuation helicopters during the attack. The prosecutor's office in Nanterre, near Paris, is leading the probe, with the allegations indicating a breach in TotalEnergies' duty of care, which endangered both its workers and civilians.

Key Takeaways

  • French prosecutors are investigating TotalEnergies SE for potential manslaughter in Mozambique following a legal complaint by victims' families and survivors.
  • Allegations include failure to protect subcontractors and provide fuel for evacuation helicopters during the 2021 jihadist attack.
  • The company was involved in the development of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) project in the region at the time.


The investigation of TotalEnergies SE not only raises concerns about the company's duty of care but also poses potential financial and reputational repercussions. The impact could extend to market value, investor relations, and regulatory scrutiny within the energy sector, especially for companies operating in high-risk zones. Compensation claims from survivors and victims' families, coupled with potential increases in insurance premiums, may further strain the company. Additionally, this situation could impede TotalEnergies' expansion plans in Africa as other nations evaluate their business relationships amid safety apprehensions. In the long run, the energy industry may witness an overhaul of safety measures and emergency response protocols to avert similar incidents.

Did You Know?

  • Involuntary Manslaughter: This criminal offense pertains to unintentional loss of life due to recklessness or criminal negligence. TotalEnergies SE is being investigated for potential involuntary manslaughter as a result of alleged failures to protect its subcontractors and provide helicopter fuel during the jihadist attack in Mozambique.
  • Duty of Care: TotalEnergies SE has a legal obligation to ensure the safety of its workers and subcontractors. The investigation suggests that the company failed in this duty, endangering both its employees and civilians.
  • Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Project: This project, involving the development of liquefied natural gas, may have influenced TotalEnergies' response during the attack. The investigation implies that the company's failure to supply fuel for evacuation helicopters is associated with this project.

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