NPR : News

Four More BP Employees Will Be Charged In Oil Spill

Two sources tell NPR that four more BP employees will be charged in relation to the BP oil spill, which dumped more than 200 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.

The individuals facing manslaughter charges are former BP well managers Donald Vidrine and Robert Kaluza. Another high ranking official, David Rainey, the former head of Gulf of Mexico exploration, will be charged with downplaying the spill to lawmakers. One more lower ranking BP employee will face insider trading charges.

Bob Habans, a lawyer for Vidrine, told NPR early Thursday he would have comments after he reviewed any charging documents. A lawyer for Rainey signaled he would vigorously contest the charges.

Previously, only one other person had been criminally charged. BP engineer, Kurt Mix, was charged with obstruction of justice for allegedly deleting text messages after the spill.

This news comes just hours after BP pleaded guilty and agreed to pay a record $4 billion in criminal penalties.

Update at 2:32 p.m. ET. A Scapegoat:

Lawyers for Bob Kaluza say that the government "needs a scapegoat."

"No one should take any satisfaction in this indictment of an innocent man," Shaun Clarke and David Gerger said in a statement.

Kaluza has worked in the oilfields for more than 44 years. He joined BP in 1997 and started work on Deepwater Horizon for four days before the explosion.

Update at 1:56 p.m. ET. A Misguided Effort:

Bob Habans a lawyer for Vidrine said the Justice department is exercising "exceedingly poor judgement" by indicting Vidrine.

"We cannot begin to explain or understand the misguided effort of the United States Attorney and the Department of Justice to blame Don Vidrine and Bob Kaluza, the other well site leader, for this terrible tragedy," Habans said in a statement.

"These charges are a miscarriage of justice," he added.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Once Outlaws, Young Lords Find A Museum Home For Radical Roots

Inspired by the Black Panthers, the Young Lords were formed in New York City by a group of Puerto Rican youth in 1969. Their history is now on display in a new exhibition.
NPR

Europe's Taste For Caviar Is Putting Pressure On A Great Lakes Fish

Scientists say lake herring, a key fish in Lake Superior's food web, is suffering because of mild winters and Europe's appetite for roe. Some say the species may be at risk of "collapse."
WAMU 88.5

A Congressional Attempt To Speed The Development Of Lifesaving Treatments

Earlier this month, the House of Representatives passed the 21st Century Cures Act in a rare bi-partisan effort. The bill is meant to speed the development of lifesaving treatments, but critics warn it may also allow ineffective or even harmful drugs onto the market.

NPR

Some Google Street View Cars Now Track Pollution Levels

Google's already tested three of the pollution-sensor equipped cars in Denver, and is currently trying them out in the Bay Area.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.