US judge approves Transocean $1bn civil settlement in oil spill

19 February 2013 20:32  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--A US district judge on Tuesday approved the $1bn (€750m) agreement for offshore drilling company Transocean to settle civil charges in connection with the 2010 Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill.

Last Thursday, another judge had approved the $400m criminal settlement, which was part of the $1.4bn guilty plea agreement Transocean had signed on 3 January to resolve federal Clean Water Act claims.

According to court documents, Transocean provided an offshore drilling unit and crew to implement UK-based oil giant BP’s plan for the Macondo well.

The April 2010 explosion and fire in the US Gulf of Mexico killed 11 workers and sunk the Deepwater Horizon rig, leading to a massive spill.

In connection with the Deepwater Horizon disaster, BP is scheduled to appear in court on Monday to defend itself in the federal civil trial for remaining claims it was unable to settle.

The company had agreed to a $4bn criminal settlement, as well as a $525m civil settlement for claims made by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Separately, BP reached an economic- and property-damage settlement with several people and businesses who sued the company following the spill.

In addition, three of BP’s managers and a former engineer also face criminal charges.

($1 = €0.75)

By: Tracy Dang
+1 713 525 2653

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