Tuesday, July 22, 2014
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The August retrial of a former BP engineer accused of obstructing justice in an investigation of the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill has been postponed while an appeals court decides whether a judge was right to throw out his earlier conviction.
Federal prosecutors allege that Kurt Mix illegally deleted text messages to obstruct an investigation involving the amount of oil flowing from BP's Macondo well after the Deepwater Horizon rig explosion.
Mix, who pleaded not guilty, was convicted in December. But U.S. District Judge Stanwood Duval ordered a new trial, saying the verdict had been tainted by remarks the forewoman made to other jurors.
Federal prosecutors have appealed Duval's decision. So, Duval canceled the August trial date Tuesday, saying trial will be rescheduled "at the appropriate time."