A federal judge ruled Wednesday that BP must pay $130 million to a court administrator to disburse among those who claimed they were injured from the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
BP had fought the fees, calling them “excessive costs,” one attorney for the company said, Reuters reported. But U.S. Magistrate Judge Sally Shushan in New Orleans found differently. She called it “unreasonable” that BP would halt its payments to claimants — payments that have already surpassed $560 million since June 2012, Reuters said.
BP didn’t comment on the judge’s ruling. But the company’s main argument is that a fee schedule worked out in 2012 during settlement talks with Gulf-area businesses and residents is unfair. The total amount the company could end up paying, when all’s said and done, is $1.5 billion, a BP finance director predicted, Reuters reported.
On top of that, BP said, much of the fee money has been paid for fraudulent claims.
In all, BP faces about $42.4 billion worth of charges that are related to the April 20, 2010, drilling rig explosion that killed 11.
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