Arts & Life
7:23 am
Wed December 12, 2012

Judge Sets Date to Rule on BP Plea Deal Over Spill

A federal judge says she will decide next month whether to accept a plea deal that calls for BP PLC to pay a record $4.5 billion in penalties for its role in a deadly 2010 rig explosion and the massive oil spill it triggered in the Gulf of Mexico.

Workers remove oil from the beach at Gulf Shores on June 12, 2010.
Credit Kate Mercer/Press-Register

To resolve a Justice Department probe, the London-based oil giant agreed last month to plead guilty to criminal charges involving the deaths of 11 workers and lying to Congress about how much oil spilled from its blown-out well.


U.S. District Judge Sarah Vance scheduled a Jan. 29 hearing where she will either accept or reject BP's plea agreement with the government.


BP can withdraw its plea agreement if she rejects the deal.