BP oil spill

A LaPlace man has pleaded guilty to fraud in connection with damage claims from the 2010 Gulf oil spill.

U.S. Attorney Kenneth Polite's office says 33-year-old Charlie English pleaded guilty yesterday to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

Prosecutors said English worked as a claims adjuster for the Gulf Coast Claims Facility. In September 2010, he began providing fraudulent documentation for people who made phony claims for loss of fishing income. The claims resulted in more than $257,000 in illegal payouts.

PO3 Patrick Kelley / US DOD

The Governor’s Advisory Commission met Wednesday to receive an update on the RESTORE Act from Chris Barnes, a legal advisor from the governor’s office.

Barnes reminded the group that of the three pots of money going to the five gulf coast states, only one is tied to impact from the oil spill.

Those funds will be distributed to the gulf coast states based on a formula established by the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council.

Eve Abrams

VEGGI is a community member owned and operated farmer’s cooperative based out of New Orleans East, Louisiana. VEGGI Farmer's Cooperative is dedicated to empowering growers in the Greater New Orleans area, starting in New Orleans East, in order to create sustainable, high quality jobs that enhance the quality of life of communities through increasing local food access and promotion of sustainable agriculture. 


A second audit into BP damage claims over its Gulf oil spill says the process is correct 99.5 percent of the time.

Nola.com reports the third-party audit was released by claims administrator Patrick Juneau.

It was requested by BP after the first report found last year that the program was running properly.

And a separate court-ordered check found only isolated claims of fraud.

No comment yet from BP.

The oil company has been battling to remove Juneau as claims administrator. It says settlements are tainted by fraud and mistakes.

BP is continuing its attempt to get rid of the administrator of damage claim settlements stemming from the 2010 oil spill.

The oil company filed notice yesterday that it plans an appeal to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.

BP has long complained about Patrick Juneau's administration of claims. It says he should be removed because of an alleged conflict of interest and other reasons.

But U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier last week rejected BP's arguments.

After a federal judge ruled that BP's "gross negligence" and "willful misconduct" were to blame for 2010's huge Gulf of Mexico oil spill, the company was exposed to billions in federal fines. The company asked the judge last month to reconsider. And on Thursday, he said no.

The ruling against BP could trigger up to $18 billion in fines under the Clean Water Act — far more than the $3.5 billion the oil company has reportedly set aside for that purpose.

NPR's Jeff Brady reports:

Lawyers accused of mishandling damage claims from the 2010 BP oil spill are expected to testify today before a federal judge.

U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier is scheduled to hear the matter.

The lawyers are at the center of a 2013 probe conducted by former FBI director Louis Freeh.

Claims of fraud are linked to a settlement of civil litigation that following the Deepwater Horizon offshore rig disaster. 

The lawyers set to testify today are expected to challenge the report's findings.

Lane Lefort / U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack was in Norco, Louisiana on Monday to announce a new environmental initiative aimed at private landowners along the Gulf Coast.

The Department of Agriculture and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation are looking to fund conservation projects as part of the ongoing recovery from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.

Brocken Inaglory / Wikimedia

New research shows that the BP oil spill left an oily “bathub ring” on the sea floor that’s about the size of Rhode Island.

The study by David Valentine, the chief scientist on the federal damage assessment research ships, estimates that about 10 million gallons of oil coagulated on the floor of the Gulf of Mexico around the damaged Deepwater Horizons oil rig. Valentine said the spill left other splotches containing even more oil.

A former BP engineer waiting for a retrial on charges stemming from the 2010 oil spill has been granted permission to travel abroad.

A federal judge says that Kurt Mix will be allowed to travel to China next month to attend his stepson's wedding, and visit with family.

Prosecutors have accused Mix of deleting text messages about the amount of oil hushing from the blown-out well.

He was convicted on one count in 2013 but won a new trial based on juror misconduct. He has pleaded not-guilty.

Pages