BP loses case filed by U.S. investors

Feb. 15, 2012 at 8:09 AM
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HOUSTON, Feb. 15 (UPI) -- A district court in Houston said British energy company BP faces fraud allegations in a case filed by U.S. investors over the 2010 oil spill.

BP faces a multitude of legal complications over the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. A gas explosion at the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig killed 11 workers and led to one of the worst disasters in the history of the energy sector.

Plaintiffs who owned BP shares listed on the New York Stock Exchange claimed BP misrepresented its ability to address a major oil spill like the 2010 accident, The Daily Telegraph in London reports.

"Plaintiffs have sufficiently pleaded facts to demonstrate that BP misrepresented the size of the spill it was prepared to respond to in the gulf and misrepresented the company's general spill response capabilities," U.S. District Judge Keith Ellison was quoted by the British newspaper as ruling.

Claims that the British energy company actually lied to investors were dismissed.

BP in late February faces a case in New Orleans that may determine what BP and its partners at the Deepwater Horizon rig, Transocean and Halliburton, will have to pay in fines for the disaster.

Oilfield services company Weatherford International was cleared this week for its role in the 2010 oil spill. Weatherford built the float collar used on the failed Macondo well on the floor of the Gulf of Mexico. The collar is used to contain cement at the bottom of the well.

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