A federal judge yesterday maintained the ruling that BP’s conduct was “grossly negligent,” reported Reuters. Despite the many times that BP has tried to abandon accountability, the law prevails and holds them to their criminal actions regarding the 2010 oil spill.
“It is ironic that BP talks about people ‘getting something for nothing’ when that’s exactly what BP is trying to do,” commented Brian Barr, an attorney with Levin, Papantonio and a member of the Plaintiff’s Steering Committee for the BP Gulf Coast Oil Spill litigation.
Because of the ruling by U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier of of New Orleans, BP still faces up to $18 billion in penalties for violating the Clean Water Act. This ruling came in the wake of BP’s most recent attempt at blowing off the fines it had already agreed to pay as a result of the spill. Judge Barbier ruled on September 4 that BP was grossly negligent and 67 percent at fault for the event that killed 11 people.
After the Sep. 4 ruling, BP argued that the ruling “relied on inadmissible testimony from an expert for Halliburton Co., which provided cementing work at the spill site.” However, Barbier said BP “opened the door to this testimony” through the expert’s cross examination. BP, in classic criminal fashion, tried to play the victim of frivolous litigation but only buried itself even more.
“BP’s assertion that it was ‘unfairly surprised’ and ‘prejudiced’ by the court’s reliance on this testimony lack any basis in fact or law,” read Barbier’s ruling. “”Rather, it seems BP was a ‘victim’ of its own trial strategy.”
What’s worse for BP, and better for the claimants, is that Barbier also rejected BP’s bid to drop Patrick Juneau, the administrator who handles the payouts to the BP suit’s claimants.
BP has tried every way possible to shirk responsibility for the spill and avoid paying out the penalties as ruled by federal courts. BP even agreed to the penalties, but once more became known about the oil spill, the more guilty BP became, thus increasing the penalties.
BP’s reckless negligence and thoughtless pursuit of profits caused the 2010 oil spill. And since the time has now come for BP to pay, the company wants to strip itself of any accountability for the damage done to people and businesses.