BP, the company recently found grossly negligent by U.S. District Court Judge Barbier, has been busted for using grade-school tactics in its ongoing legal defense as it tries to avoid paying for one of the worst oil disasters in U.S. history.
According to a ruling from Judge Carl Barbier, the counsel for BP tried to cheat on the page limit of its filing to sneak in additional information. The filing was limited to 35-pages, double-spaced. Yet, BP attorneys found it appropriate to cheat on the line spacing of the filing and, according to the Court, snuck in as much as six additional pages of information:
“BP’s counsel filed a brief that, at first blush, appeared just within the 35-page limit. A closer study reveals that BP counsel abused the page limit by reducing the line spacing to slightly less than double-spaced. As a result, BP exceeded the (already enlarged) page limit by roughly six pages.”
Judge Barbier continued to scold BP counsel for their behavior:
“The Court should not have to waste its time policing such simple rules – particularly in a case as massive and complex as this. … Counsel’s tactics would not be appropriate for a college term paper. It is certainly not appropriate here.”
“BP has fought paying Gulf Coast residents for the damage caused by the Deepwater Horizon disaster, every step of the way,” commented Brian Barr, a partner with the Levin Papantonio law firm and a member of the plaintiffs steering committee for the BP lawsuit.
Just this month, BP was found grossly negligent by Judge Barbier. However, BP is fighting that decision. Should that decision stand, BP faces paying billions of dollars in damages to those hurt by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.