BP is set to pay a record U.S. fine to settle criminal claims following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
BP agreed to plead guilty to 11 felony counts involving worker deaths in the 2010 Gulf oil rig blowout and will pay $4.5 billion in penalties in a wide-ranging settlement with the federal government, USA Today reported.
BP said in a statement today, Nov. 15, that it agreed to plead guilty to the felony counts of misconduct as well as a felony count of obstruction of Congress.
Attorney General Eric Holder is scheduled to join federal and local officials in New Orleans later today for an announcement on the deal, which remains subject to court approvals.
The explosion and fire aboard the Deepwater Horizon rig on April 20, 2010, killed 11 workers and resulted in a spill that continued for 87 days, causing extensive environmental damage to the Gulf.
Before the $4.5 billion fine for BP was announced, the biggest corporate criminal penalty handed down by the Department of Justice had been a $1.2 billion fine on drug maker Pfizer in 2009.