Bp settles criminal charges for $4 billion in spill; supervisors indicted on manslaughter – the washington post gasco abu dhabi location


A separate indictment accused David Rainey, a former BP vice president, of hiding information from Congress and lying to law enforcement officials by understating the rate at which oil was gushing into the Gulf of Mexico. Rainey, 58, was BP’s deputy incident commander and BP’s second-highest-ranking representative at the Coast Guard’s unified command for the electricity experiments for high school spill response.

“Make no mistake: While the company is guilty, individuals committed these crimes,” said Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer, head of the criminal division. Of the two rig supervisors, Breuer said, “In the face of glaring red gas national average 2009 flags indicating that the well was not secure, both men allegedly failed to take appropriate action to prevent the blowout.”

BP and the Justice Department failed to agree on a separate settlement of federal civil claims, including federal and state claims of damages to natural resources. BP said it is “prepared to vigorously defend itself against gas weed strain remaining civil claims.” Clean Water Act fines alone could total $5 billion to nearly $20 billion, depending on whether BP is found to be guilty of gross negligence or willful misconduct.

But the settlement resolves all criminal charges. BP agreed to plead guilty to 11 felony counts of “misconduct or neglect of ships’ officers.” Jane Barrett, an environmental law professor at the University of Maryland, said the seaman’s manslaughter statute, first passed in 1838 in response to steamboat accidents, has a lower threshold for guilt including “misconduct, negligence or inattention to duties gas in stomach.”

The last of those was for lying to Congress. Rainey allegedly said that gas density units BP’s out-of-control Macondo well was leaking at a rate of 5,000 barrels a day when he had an e-mail from one of BP’s own experts contradicting that. Later it became clear that the well was leaking at more than 10 times the rate Rainey gave lawmakers. Rainey also concealed his own higher estimates, derived from calculating methods he found by surfing the Internet, the indictment said.

“David Rainey is a man of high integrity gas leak explosion and moral character who has done absolutely nothing wrong,” said Brian Heberlig, a partner at Steptoe Johnson, in a statement. “We are profoundly disappointed that the Department of Justice is attempting to turn a tragic accident and its tumultuous aftermath into criminal activity. We are even o gastronomo more disappointed that BP has succumbed to the pressure and agreed to this extortionate settlement.”

“All of us at BP deeply regret the tragic loss of life caused by the Deepwater Horizon accident as well as the impact of the spill on the Gulf coast region,” Bob Dudley, BP’s chief executive, said in a statement before Holder’s announcement. “We apologize for our role in the accident, and as today’s resolution with the U.S. government further reflects, we have accepted responsibility for our actions.”

BP said in a news release its criminal plea would not undercut efforts to contain the size of civil claims gas and bloating pain. It said 13 of the 14 criminal charges “are based on the negligent misinterpretation of the negative pressure test conducted on board the Deepwater Horizon.” BP said that it “acknowledged this misinterpretation more than two years ago” and insisted that the electricity billy elliot karaoke agreement “is consistent with BP’s position in the ongoing civil litigation that this was an accident resulting from multiple causes, involving multiple parties, as found by other official investigations.”

“It’s obviously not cheap,” said Pavel Molchanov, an oil analyst at the investment firm Raymond James. But, he said, “it’s a positive step” from an investor’s point of view. “By eliminating the criminal overhang electricity usage by state, the inference is that BP can afford to be more aggressive in dealing with the civil claims,” he said. “They no longer have to fear the criminal stick.”

Kaluza and Vidrine, the two BP rig supervisors, could serve up to 10 years in prison for each seaman’s manslaughter count and eight for each involuntary manslaughter count. But it is unusual for anyone to go to prison because of a spill. Joseph Hazelwood, the inebriated gasbuddy near me captain who ran the Exxon Valdez tanker aground in 1989, was found not guilty of operating a vessel while under the influence of alcohol by a jury in Alaska. He was fined $50,000 and sentenced to community service for the negligent discharge of oil, a misdemeanor.

It was unclear whether BP’s plea would curtail its ability to bid on contracts to supply fuel to the U.S. military. BP has been gas problem in babies a major Pentagon supplier. But analysts expect that it will not impair the company’s ability to bid for leases and explore in the Gulf of Mexico. BP has a huge stake in the United electricity labs high school States, where it has 23,000 employees and makes 40 percent of its investments. The company said that it “has not been advised of the intention of any federal agency to suspend or debar the company in connection with this plea agreement.”

Under the terms of the plea agreement, BP has also agreed to further gas utility “enhance” the safety of drilling operations in the Gulf of Mexico. These steps relate to BP’s risk management, including third-party auditing and verification, training, cementing and well-control equipment such as blowout preventers. In addition, BP has agreed to work with academics and regulators to develop new safety technologies for deepwater drilling.