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Judge approves BP settlement for 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill

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U.S. Judge Carl Barbier granted final approval on Monday to BP Plc’s civil settlement over its 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill after it reached a deal in July 2015 to pay up to $18.7 billion in penalties to the U.S. government and five states.

“Today’s action holds BP accountable with the largest environmental penalty of all time while launching one of the most extensive environmental restoration efforts ever undertaken,” U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch said in a statement.

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The company at the time said its total pre-tax charges from the spill set aside for criminal and civil penalties and cleanup costs were around $53.8 billion. (link.reuters.com/duz94w)

Under the terms of the original agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice and the Gulf Coast states, BP will pay at least $12.8 billion for Clean Water Act fines and natural resource damages, plus $4.9 billion to states. The payouts will be staggered over as many as 18 years.

The rig explosion on April 20, 2010, the worst offshore oil disaster in U.S. history, killed 11 workers and spewed millions of barrels of oil onto the shorelines of several states for nearly three months.

(Reporting By Jonathan Stempel, Terry Wade and Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Christian Schmollinger)

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WATCH: Trump delivers incoherent rant about Obama during fact-free announcement on Syria withdrawal

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President Donald Trump delivered an incoherent rant about former President Barack Obama on Wednesday as he announced that he would lift sanctions on the Turkish government.

Even though America's Kurdish allies are still furious after the president gave Turkey a green light to invade their territory in northern Syria, Trump nonetheless portrayed his policies as an unqualified success.

"It’s too early for me to be congratulated, but we have done a good job," Trump said. "We’ve saved a lot of lives. Most importantly, we have avoided another costly military intervention that could have led to disastrous far-reaching consequences. Many thousands of people could have been killed."

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‘Serious harm and suffering’: Jared Kushner’s apartment management company sued for ‘hundreds of thousands of violations’

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An apartment management company owned by Jared Kushner is being sued by Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh, who says the company “victimized consumers, many of whom are financially vulnerable” and committed “hundreds of thousands of violations” of consumer protection laws, the Baltimore Sun reports.

The lawsuit was filed this Monday against Westminster Management and alleges that the company utilizes "unfair and deceptive" rental practices in its Baltimore apartment complexes, which were reportedly infested with rats. In a statement, Kushner Cos. CEO Laurent Morali said that the company refuses to be "extorted by an ambitious attorney general who clearly cares more about scoring political points than fighting real crime and improving the lives of the people of Maryland."

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Rudy Giuliani’s henchmen claim executive privilege concerns in first court appearance

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Rudy Giuliani's henchmen appeared in court on campaign finance violations, and they may attempt to claim evidence in the case is protected by executive privilege.

Ukrainian-American businessmen Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, who were arrested earlier this month on their way out of the country on one-way tickets, pleaded not guilty Wednesday in their first court appearance, according to Courthouse News.

Prosecutors told the court they had issued subpoenas for 50 bank accounts related to the pair.

But an attorney for Parnas told the judge there may be concerns to sort out related to executive privilege due to their relationship with Giuliani, who serves as President Donald Trump's personal attorney.

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