Pension schemes and asset managers from within the UK and Europe are suing BP in the U.S. court of Texas over alleged fraud and negligence before, during and after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
When in April 2010 an explosion hit a drilling oil rig 11 men died, but nobody watching the news at the time could possibly envisage that this was also the beginning of the worst ever offshore spill in the history of the U.S. and an environmental disaster which ensured BP's stock price would be halved within the space of a few weeks.
Now, more than two years later, the case is back in the news as institutional investors claim BP lied to them about its safety first culture in the years leading up to the spill. The claimants say BP is therefore responsible for the loss of "an amount to be proved at trial", believed to be in the tens of millions of pounds.
On behalf of six investors, including the South Yorkshire pension fund, Skandia Global Funds and GAM fund management, lawyers filed a claim for common law fraud, negligent misrepresentation and statutory fraud in the Texas. The investors state that they would not have bought the shares in BP at the price they paid if they had "known the truth".
Advised by lawyers from Pomerantz, Grossman, Hufford, Dahlstrom & Gross, twenty investors have currently signed up to the class action case, all are said to have "significant" holdings in the oil giant. The same law firm is also leading a case by U.S. investors who seek to recover funds over the same claims.
BP Holdings:Pension schemes sue BP over fraud and negligence