BP Wins Fast Review of Spill Payments Challenge

Thick oil from the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill floats on the surface of the water and coats the marsh wetlands in Bay Jimmy near Port Sulphur, Louisiana, June 11, 2010. BP's liabilities sky-rocketed in tandem with estimates about the scale of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill Friday, as analysts pushed the possible price tag well above four billion dollars. Wall Street experts said the monetary cost of the disaster for BP would be tied to new estimates that put the amount of oil spilled at between one and two million barrels so far, double the previous estimate. (National Journal)

A federal court will quickly review BP's attempt to block payment of claims from the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill that can't be directly linked to the disaster, Bloomberg reports.

BP won expedited consideration in an order issued yesterday by U.S. Circuit Court Judge Edith Brown Clement in New Orleans. The judge ordered spill victims to respond to BP's motion by Jan. 8, the news service reported Friday.

The British oil giant has gone on the offensive — in the courts and through major ad buys — over what it alleges are bogus claims of economic harm from the spill that temporarily shuttered fisheries and halted deepwater oil exploration.

Speaking of BP, Bloomberg also reports on a criminal prosecution that stemmed from the fatal 2010 accident.

Former BP engineer Kurt Mix on Thursday asked a judge to set aside an obstruction of justice conviction, alleging that jurors broke the rules during deliberations, Bloomberg reports.