Federal judge delays June trial for BP supe's case
NEW ORLEANS - The trial for two BP employees charged in the deadly 2010 explosion on the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig has been put on hold while a federal appeals court considers the dismissal of some charges filed against them.
The case involves BP well site leaders Robert Kaluza and Donald Vidrine. They were indicted on 22 manslaughter counts in the deaths of 11 rig workers.
On Dec. 10, U.S. District Judge Stanwood Duval Jr. threw out 11 counts of "seaman's manslaughter" against the two. Duval said the counts exceeded the scope of the statute.
Federal prosecutors are appealing Duval's decision to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Eleven other counts of involuntary manslaughter remain in effect against Kaluza and Vidrine. On Wednesday, Duval suspended activity on those charges pending the appeal.