BP oil spill trial to start in less than a month

POSTED: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 - 5:18pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, October 24, 2012 - 10:16am

The trial in the U.S. District Court in New Orleans over the BP oil spill gets underway in just over a month.

Four gulf coast states were affected by that explosion and spill in April 2010.

Today, Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange says he's ready for the trial.

The trial is expected to last six months and will be done in three phases.

The initial “Incident Phase" of the trial will examine the role of the various defendants in the explosion and sinking of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig, and the initiation of the flow of oil. A settlement is a possibility.

Strange stated, "We've said that we were absolutely open to any settlement discussions that were fair and reasonable. As a matter of fact, I think today representatives from the states, all five states, the governors and AG's offices, are in Washington meeting at the Justice Department to talk about how a structure might be developed."

Of that $20 billion BP oil fund, Attorney General Strange says about $6 billion has already been paid out, and he says the repayments have been far too slow.

Louisiana's attorney general is also involved in the lawsuit coming up in late February.

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