Sun, Dec 23, 2012 - Page 7 News List

Judge gives BP settlement final approval

AP, NEW ORLEANS

Still unresolved are environmental damage claims brought by the federal government and Gulf Coast states against BP and its partners on the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig, and claims against Switzerland-based rig owner Transocean and Houston-based cement contractor Halliburton.

BP also has paid or agreed to pay settlements of a record US$4.5 billion in criminal penalties, including US$1.3 million in fines.

US District Judge Sarah Vance has scheduled a Jan. 29 hearing to accept or reject that plea agreement with the US Department of Justice, which also includes guilty pleas to criminal charges involving the workers’ deaths and to lying about the amount of oil spilled from the blown-out well.

In addition, BP has agreed to pay settlements of US$525 million to the Securities and Exchange Commission, which accused it of misleading investors by lowballing the size of the spill.

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