Judge OKs Transocean's $1 Billion Civil Settlement Over Gulf Oil Spill

By Eyder Peralta

February 19, 2013

A federal judge in New Orleans has approved a $1 billion civil settlement over its role in the Gulf of Mexico oil spill where 11 men died in April of 2010, the AP reports.

As we reported back in January, federal authorities blamed Transocean "for acting negligently when the rig's crew proceeded with maneuvers to the deep-sea well in the face of clear danger signals that oil and natural gas were flowing."

In total, Transocean has agreed to pay $1.4 billion in criminal and civil penalties.

When the EPA announced the settlement, it said the $400 million in criminal penalties for criminal conduct was the "second-largest criminal Clean Water Act fines and penalties in U.S. History."

The AP adds:

"U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier said in his ruling Tuesday that he found "no just reason for delay" in approving the civil settlement.

"Last week, a different judge approved Transocean's criminal settlement with the federal government. The company pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge and will pay an additional $400 million in criminal penalties."

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