Oil giant BP will shell out even more dough to pay for the Deepwater Horizon debacle, and two of its employees are being hit with manslaughter charges.
The company agreed to pay a criminal penalty of $4.5 billion — the largest in U.S. history — for the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, a person familiar with the deal said Thursday.
The company, which owned the well that unleashed a seemingly endless stream of bubbling crude into the water, will cough up the payments over the course of six years.
The penalty comes on top of a $20 billion fund BP established for claims relating to the environmental catastrophe that began on April 20, 2010.
A pair of BP employees will also face manslaughter counts related to the death of 11 people aboard the Deepwater Horizon oil rig 50 miles off of the Louisiana coast, according to the source, who spoke to The Associated Press.
They were not identified.
BP told Reuters it would plead guilty to 11 felony counts of misconduct or neglect relating to the death of 11 workers, one misdemeanor count under the Clean Water
Act, one misdemeanor count under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and one felony count of obstruction of Congress.
An estimated 206 million gallons of crude oil spewed into the Gulf from the well, contaminating tidal estuaries and beaches, killing wildlife and shutting down commercial fishing.