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HOUSTON -- The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that it will not stop a standing settlement regarding the 2005 BP plant explosion in Texas City that killed 15 and left more than 170 injured.
As a result of the ruling, a federal judge in Houston will decide whether to give final approval of the much-criticized plea deal with BP, reported The Associated Press. The agreement, which has a BP subsidiary pleading guilty to a violation of the Clean Air Act, calls for a $50 million fine and three years of probation for the company.
The justice's decision would finally settle criminal conduct charges related to the explosion by the London-based oil company. The AP reported that lawyer Paul Cassell, who represents one of the blast victims, said he is disappointed with the decision.
A spokesman for BP declined comment to the AP, but reiterated the company plans to ask the judge to decide on the plea deal. U.S. Attorney Don DeGabrielle agreed with the Supreme Court's decision and told the AP his office is ready to proceed.
In other BP news, the company was selected as the official Oil and Gas Partner and London 2012's third Sustainability Partner in the Olympic Games. The company will be responsible for providing fuelling facilities for the vehicles required to keep the Games moving, which includes providing Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) for catering, vehicle washing facilities and technical support services, including a system for tracking and reporting carbon emissions.
Group Chief Executive of BP Tony Hayward said in a released statement: "The Olympic movement is founded on a belief in human endeavor and high performance, attributes which are at the heart of BP's own agenda. As the UK's largest company with headquarters in London we want to support this momentous event which will also provide a unique opportunity to engage with our own large UK and global workforce, the millions of customers we serve each day and our existing partners in the arts, education and cultural arena.
He continued: "Between now and 2012 we will be increasingly targeting our marketing and social engagement activities to reflect the building excitement around the Cultural Olympiad and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. We are looking forward to playing a significant part in making London 2012 the Games for everyone."