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Texas AG files lawsuit against BP for oil spill damages

By Bryan Cohen | May 20, 2013

AUSTIN, Texas (Legal Newsline) - Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott announced a lawsuit Friday against BP America and other defendants for their contributions to the April 2010 Deepwater Horizon offshore oil spill.

The enforcement action against BP America, Anadarko, Halliburton, Transocean and other related entities seeks economic damages, natural resources damages and civil penalties. The lawsuit follows years of work with other Gulf states, the federal government and BP to resolve damages connected with harm caused to the region by the oil spill.

The parties involved have not been able to completely resolve claims related to the disaster, which resulted in the state of Texas filing an enforcement action to preserve its claims against BP and other defendants. Abbott's office anticipates that the case will be consolidated with a case already in progress in New Orleans.

Abbott's office filed the lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas in Beaumont. The lawsuit seeks both monetary actions and funds that would be used for projects to offset and mitigate natural resource damages in Texas. The enforcement action seeks civil penalties for each day of oil discharge, civil penalties for every barrel of oil that was discharged, lost state hotel occupancy tax and mixed beverage tax revenue, lost sales tax, revenue lost from state park entrance, facility, activity and concession fees and damages to natural resources. The lawsuit also seeks court costs and attorney fees.

The lawsuit follows partial settlements of federal claims by Transocean and BP, including multiple criminal plea agreements.

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