June 1st, 2010
05:21 PM ET
11 years ago

Feds open criminal oil spill investigation

(CNN) - U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said Tuesday that the Justice Department has launched a criminal investigation into the massive oil spill spreading through the Gulf of Mexico.

Holder said the investigation would be both comprehensive and aggressive. He promised that the federal officials will prosecute anyone who broke the law.

Holder, who made the announcement during a visit to the Gulf, called early signs of the spill heartbreaking and tragic

The attorney general was in the Gulf to survey the BP oil spill and meet with state attorneys general and federal prosecutors from Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi, according to the Justice Department.

Full story

Filed under: BP • Eric Holder • Obama administration
soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. Fed Up Fred

    "He promised that the federal officials will prosecute anyone who broke the law."

    Well, except illegal aliens, bribe-offering and accepting politicians, poll-threatening Panthers, and anyone else of particular political interest.

    June 1, 2010 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  2. Eric

    So an accidental oil spill is now being investigated as a crime, but the office of the chief executive knowingly and willingly offering something of value to influence the outcome of the election of a senator is somehow NOT being investigated???

    It's time for an independent investigation and it should come from the legislative branch, as it's clear the executive branch is certainly not going to investigate itself.

    Barry, you should hire a good attorney... and fast. You're about to make Watergate look like the insignificant third-rate burglary it truly was.

    June 1, 2010 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  3. mk

    Well, he can start by looking at Halliburton. They "worked" on the well just before it blew up. Greedy bastards.

    June 1, 2010 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  4. hobart

    >So an accidental oil spill is now being investigated as a crime,

    Yes, if there is actual evidence of not doing what was legally required.

    >but the office of the chief executive knowingly and willingly offering something of value to influence the outcome of the election of a senator is somehow NOT being investigated???

    Irrelevant, and for what it's worth, not a crime. Every president offers these kinds of positions to repay political favors, or to garner them. Next?

    >Utter nonsense, and you know it.

    Do tell us, why do you so hate America that you find it necessary to lie to try and make a point?

    June 1, 2010 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  5. Victim of GOP Taliban

    Dick Cheney should have nothing to hide then. What does it matter if he refuses to disclose how many times he met with Big Oil executives behind closed doors to form energy policy? According to Eric's logic it is insignificant so why make it a secret? After all we know Sestak was offered a favor to keep his seat in the House. Gotta love that Republican transparency.

    June 1, 2010 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  6. debbie

    Hope he can connect Halliburton and Cheney to this and put them all in jail, throw away the key, and let them rot in hell.

    June 1, 2010 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  7. Steve- Illinois

    Is it a crime if an accident like this happens and the government employees in charge of overseeing this were negligent? if so, a bunch of them should run for cover. Or is that not a crime if you work for the government and are negligent in your duties?

    June 1, 2010 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  8. Independant Vet

    As one said earlier . What about Airline Crashes , etc. Then they will in the future fall under such catagory , In the mean time Illegals come on over , so you can be counted in the New Census. Obum will see to it you are safe an free.

    June 1, 2010 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  9. Bob in PA

    How about launching a criminal probe of your boss ?
    We all know someone is guilty of meddling in PAs primary election. Sestak and Willie's explanation was far too slow and inadequate to be true.

    June 1, 2010 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  10. mj

    When do they start to investigate Holder? Rumors that "Big Gov" will take over BP. Why don't they concentrate on the problem instead of instigating a Law Suit with another useless committee? When are you morons going to stop blaming Bush? Obama finds this as a distraction – would rather be campaigning or bribing.

    June 1, 2010 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  11. MatthewDetroit

    Holder...you are a joke.
    You can not get the terrorist prosecuted and the others you try to free.
    You dismissed the cases against the black panthers threatening voters.
    Illegal aliens are killing people and costing the US millions.

    But yes you feel good about going after companies.
    You are a socialist..and a utilize your passive aggressive behavior to go after industry...

    You are proving to be an idiot.

    June 1, 2010 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  12. terry,va

    We ought to open an investigation on Obummie and Holder. Those idiots have driven the stock market down and pointed fingers on something they have no clue about. Obummie couldn't protect a nail driven in a tree. Holder would give a terrorist a metal and a free pass because terrorist like the NYC SUV attempted bomber had his house foreclosed. Where is the stimulus money? This should have prevented that attempt. Not!!! The stimulus that needs to be applied is a cattle prod to Obummie and his administration.

    June 1, 2010 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  13. DAVID

    The gov't needs to file charges against itself and the environmentalists. There the ones that have forced oil companies to drill so far off shore. A similar thing happened in Mexico but since they were drilling at a shallow depth they were able to fix it. So blame the gov't and the environmentalists not BP.

    June 1, 2010 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  14. DAVID

    While he is charging people with crimes he might as well charge Bill Clinton and Acorn for forcing banks into giving mortgages to people that did not have good credit scores and Bill Clinton sweetened the deal by having the gov't buy the loans from the banks. That's why the banks went nuts lending to unqualified people. Thanks Bill you were such a great president–not

    June 1, 2010 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  15. Donald Herbert ABELL


    On CBC Radio 1, 990 this morning, I heard a comment that Russia has capped 5, (five) out of control oil wells using neuclear explosions?

    When will we get them to help us?



    June 1, 2010 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  16. phoenix86

    Actually, the Justice Department would be better served to investigate the numerous Constitutional violations of the Obama administration.

    June 1, 2010 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  17. Discernment


    Eleven hard working oil rig employees trusted "BP / Halliburton" had their personal interest at heart just before the rig blew up. Eleven employees were killed and now forever lost at sea.

    As each day goes by more oil industry experts and whistleblowers confirm BP's dysfunction and reckless practices. Yes, U.S. Attorney General Holder should seek justice for the eleven BP employees killed and for the decades of devastation expected.

    June 1, 2010 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  18. Gerry NH

    The only one's who need to be investigated is the current administration. They worry more about an investigation than they are worried about fixing the leak. This is another issue of priorities for these clowns. If this was 200 to 300 feet down this would have been fixed within a day or two, but our government just needs to push these companies further from the land. Didn't the government cerify this well 10 days befor the accident?

    June 1, 2010 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  19. Russ in Benton AR

    This will go no where.

    June 1, 2010 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  20. Tom

    BP has stepped in a big puddle of crap and they don't have the boots for it.

    June 1, 2010 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  21. Jim in Idaho

    I'm a liberal....and even I don't believe anything will come of so-called "investigations" other than a few poor schmucks who have no control over BP, Transocean, or Halliburton policy might get fired.

    Nothing will happen to anyone who truly is at fault here. Do I blame Democrats for that? No......I blame Washington as whole for that. There's too much money from oil companies circulating, and Congress will do what Congress always does.....enable the loopholes through which negligent CEO's all too frequently walk all the way to the bank.

    PS. Oil on Mississippi's shore now? I'm guessing that this is a case of reap what the governor has sowed with his support of Drill, baby, drill Haley Barbour.

    PSS. We all think this is bad now? What if this happened at TWO or more sites at once, say as a result of a terrorist attack? It'd be like the oil version of Chernyobl. What politician will be dumb enough to step up and suggest THAT could never happen

    June 1, 2010 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  22. A.B.

    Well, it's about time the federal government starts holding business leaders criminally responsible for the mess they create. BP must be held financially and criminally responsible for this mess. People's lives, jobs and health are at stake. I wish the government would investigate and prosecute the players in the nation's mortgage crisis and mess. But I think the BP crisis is a good place to start.

    June 1, 2010 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  23. gg

    i remember bush saying iraqi oil was going to pay for the war how did that work out

    June 1, 2010 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  24. Elaine Mizell

    Why aren't the large oil tankers being used to help with collecting oil in the clean-up?
    EVERY EFFORT is not being used to maximize the time ergency of this situation. Hurricaine season is here, which could make this even more catostrophic!!!

    June 1, 2010 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  25. sifto

    BO hould leave them alone and let them plug the hole–its like screaming at your heart surgeon if an artery bursts during surgery–BP should tell him to take a hike–if he can't solve the problem himself–he is part of the problem for not shutting up so they can do their work;

    June 1, 2010 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
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