A federal jury in New Orleans has found a former BP executive not guilty of lying to investigators about the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Eileen Fleming reports the criminal case centered on how much oil he said was gushing from BP’s blown out well.
David Rainey was accused of low-balling estimates to match the government’s numbers showing 5,000 barrels a day was spilling from BP’s Macondo well. A federal judge found this year that the actual amount was more than six times those early estimates.
Defense attorneys say Rainey had no reason to lie, and his estimates were made honestly. Rainey had faced another criminal charge of obstructing a congressional investigation, but that charge was tossed out before the trial began.
Three other BP employees are facing separate criminal charges for their roles in the disaster that killed 11 rig workers.