POSTED: Thursday, July 25, 2013 - 5:19pm
UPDATED: Thursday, July 25, 2013 - 5:58pm
NEW ORLEANS, LA (CNN) — Oilfield services giant Halliburton will plead guilty to destroying evidence in the Deepwater Horizon disaster, the Justice Department announced Thursday.
Company officials threw out test results that showed little difference in the number of devices needed to center the cement casing in the well at the center of the 2010 disaster, according to court papers. Halliburton had recommended well owner BP use 21 centralizers, but BP used only six -- and the issue has been key point of contention between the two companies.
Halliburton is the third of the three major players to admit criminal wrongdoing in the 2010 blowout and resulting oil spill. BP and rig operator Transocean have already pleaded guilty to other charges related to the disaster, which killed 11 rig workers and unleashed the biggest oil spill in U.S. history.