BP to pay £4.5 billion for disaster

Oil super major BP has agreed to pay $4 billion (£2.5 billion) in fines and penalties and plead guilty to criminal charges for the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster, which killed 11 people and spilled millions of barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. Specifically, the company will plead guilty to 11 counts of felony manslaughter, one count of felony obstruction of Congress and violations of the Clean Water and Migratory Bird Treaty Acts. The fine represents the largest criminal resolution in US history, according to the Department of Justice.

Two top BP executives – the most senior BP supervisors on the rig at the time of the disaster – have now been charged with gross negligence. A third has been charged with obstruction of Congress and making false statements to law enforcement officials.

Meanwhile, BP has agreed to pay $525 million to settle civil fraud charges brought by the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The company still faces civil charges pursued by the US government for alleged violations of the Clean Water Act and for natural resource damages under the Oil Pollution Act.

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