Attorney General Holder Announces Legal Resolution to BP Oil Spill

BP has agreed to plead guilty to 14 federal criminal counts related to the Deepwater Horizon explosion that killed 11 workers and the subsequent oil spill that fouled the Gulf of Mexico for months and soiled miles of marshes and beaches. BP will pay $4.5 billion in the settlement brought by the U.S. government.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced the deal today in New Orleans.

“I hope that this sends a clear message to those who would engage in this kind of reckless and wanton conduct that there will be a significant penalty to pay and that individuals in companies who are engaged in these kinds of activities will themselves be held responsible. This is simply not a corporate plea. Individuals — individuals — have been charged.”

Under the settlement, BP will pay:

  • $1.25 billion in criminal fines, the largest criminal penalty in U.S. history

  • $2.4 billion for environmental restoration

  • $500 million for underestimating size of the spill