It was announced today that British Petroleum has plead guilty to 14 criminal charges in regards to the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf that killed tens of thousands of wildlife in the area, as well as 13 crew members on the oil rig that exploded. Many people do not agree with the action to have BP pay $4 billion as their get out of jail “free” card, and think that those in charge should be reprimanded further. Being charged with 13 counts of manslaughter the company cannot be placed in jail, obviously, but spokespeople for the families do not feel justice over the settlement. Taking the life of an individual is someone’s responsibility in this case and just like in any court, a fair trial should be had.
The $4 billion price tag on the oil spill comes just after another regulations case involving another $500 million to be paid back. BP, being one of the largest oil companies in the world can afford these costs, and although profit is lost in this case, it won’t be long before they have gained their ground again. Of the $4 billion, $1.26 billion of the money will go to criminal fees, and the other $3.74 billion will go to the National Fish and Wildlife Federation due to violations of the migratory bird act as well as other environmental policies.
In addition, David Rainey, the second in command for BP during the oil spill is being charged with withholding information from the court and manipulating evidence. Apparently, BP knew exactly how much oil was being lost during the catastrophe, and Rainey told the court that far less was being lost into the Gulf. This in itself is enough to incur jail time, but those decisions have yet to be confirmed or denied. Either way, this is an unprecedented case, and it will be talked about for many years to come.