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BP to pay billions over Gulf spill in largest ever penalty
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Sunday, 18 Nov 2012
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RIA Novosti reported that British multinational oil giant BP has accepted criminal liability for its disastrous oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico two years ago and will pay the largest criminal penalty in US history totaling billions of dollars.

Two BP employees also face manslaughter charges over the deaths of 11 people in the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig that resulted in the spill and BP will plead guilty to lying to Congress about the dimensions of the spill.

The largest corporate criminal penalty previously imposed by the US Justice Department was the USD 1.2 billion fine on drugmaker Pfizer in 2009.

BP said that it was in advanced discussion with the Justice Department and the stock market regulatory Securities and Exchange Commission on a resolution of all US government and SEC criminal claims against the British oil company.

Even if BP agrees to a settlement of the criminal claims against it, the company would still be liable to federal civil claims and claims for damage to natural resources.

The 2010 rig explosion resulted in millions of barrels of oil spilling into the Gulf of Mexico, contaminating hundreds of square miles of water, leading to widespread death and destruction of wildlife in the gulf and along the coast and damaging many businesses. It took almost three months to cap the well after the explosion and halt the flow of oil into the Gulf.

Source - RIA Novosti


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