Halliburton enters plea to BP spill-related charge

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NEW ORLEANS (AP) – A federal judge has scheduled a hearing on Sept. 19 for Halliburton Energy Services to plead guilty to destroying evidence following BP's 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

The company was arraigned Wednesday in New Orleans on a misdemeanor charge. Although company attorneys entered a plea of not guilty during the arraignment, Halliburton has agreed to plead guilty to one count of destruction of evidence in a deal with the U.S. Department of Justice.

Halliburton also has agreed to pay the statutory maximum fine of $200,000, be on probation for three years and to cooperate with the government's criminal investigation.

Halliburton was BP's cement contractor on the drilling rig that exploded, triggering an explosion that killed 11 workers and spilled millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf.

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