The Latest: 10 months' probation for ex-BP rig supervisor

AP News
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Posted: Apr 06, 2016 3:03 PM

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Latest on the sentencing of a former BP rig supervisor on a misdemeanor pollution charge in connection with the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill (all times local):

10 a.m.

A former BP rig supervisor will spend 10 months on probation for a misdemeanor pollution charge connected to the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

Donald Vidrine was formally sentenced Wednesday by U.S. District Judge Stanwood Duval.

Vidrine had served as a rig supervisor on the Deepwater Horizon offshore rig. Prosecutors said he and one-time co-defendant Robert Kaluza botched a pressure test before the rig's explosion, which sent millions of gallons of oil spewing into the Gulf.

Both had once faced manslaughter charges connected to the deaths of 11 rig workers. But prosecutors backed away from those charges last year, and pursued the misdemeanor Clean Water Act charge instead.

Kaluza chose to go to trial and was acquitted in February. Vidrine pleaded guilty under an agreement that called for probation.

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9 a.m.

A federal criminal case arising from the 2010 BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is nearing its end.

Donald Vidrine, a former BP rig supervisor who was aboard the Deepwater Horizon rig is set for sentencing Wednesday on a misdemeanor Clean Water Act charge.

Prosecutors claimed Vidrine and another supervisor botched a pressure test before the rig's explosion, which sent millions of gallons of oil spewing into the Gulf.

Vidrine pleaded guilty in December to the pollution charge.

A plea deal calls for him to serve 10 months of probation.

Vidrine and co-defendant Robert Kaluza once faced manslaughter charges in the deaths of 11 rig workers. Prosecutors eventually dropped those charges, opting to pursue the misdemeanor charges.

Kaluza chose to go to trial and was acquitted in February.

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This story corrects Vidrine's position to rig supervisor, and not engineer.