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32

BP: Victims Ask Too Much

BP said that lawyers for the victims of the BP's Texas refinery explosion in March 2005 asked too much money in penalty

BP said that lawyers for the victims of the BP's Texas refinery explosion in March 2005 asked too much money in penalty, which goes far beyond parameters of federal law.

The victims asked for the company to pay at least $2 billion in criminal fines, as well as submit to court-ordered monitoring to settle a criminal charge associated with the accident. Also lawyers of the victims filed papers in federal court pushing the judge to reject the $50 million plea bargain that BP struck with the U.S. Justice Department in October.

In another filing, BP and the government said a deal calling for a felony plea and a $50 million fine would bypass a lengthy trial, adding the criminal trial might not result in a guilty verdict, due to the burden of proof being higher than in civil litigation, the Houston Chronicle reported. In addition, the plea bargain ended BP's criminal liability to the incident, and the company already paid $1.6 billion to victims of the accident, CSNews Online previously reported.