Rig Owner Pays $1.4bn to Settle Over Deepwater

Transocean, owner of the Deepwater Horizon rig, settles over criminal and civil charges.


Transocean, owner of the Deepwater Horizon rig at the centre of BP’s Gulf of Mexico blowout, has reached a $1.4bn settlement with the Department of Justice to settle criminal and civil charges.

The Swiss-based rig operator has been in the dock since April 2010 saw the worst spill in American history. The $1bn in civil penalties and $400m in criminal ones is in line with what the company was expecting.

A formal statement had not been released on Thursday night but sources in the US confirmed the two sides had reached a deal far lower than the $4.5bn agreed by BP, which only covered criminal claims.

Shares in Transocean soared 10% as Wall Street investors saw a major cloud being lifted. Transocean had said in a regulatory filing three months ago that it had discussed a $1.5bn settlement with the DoJ but had set aside a $2bn fund for paying claims related to the Macondo disaster, when 11 lives were lost.

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