BP agreed last night to pay $303m to settle charges that it had manipulated the propane gas market in the United States.
BP was charged last year with price-rigging by cornering the propane market during illegal energy trading in 2004. A Department of Justice lawsuit alleged that one trader told another: “Dude, you’re the entire [expletive deleted] propane market.”
As well as the $303m fine, it was reported last night, the settlement is also believed to include a deferred prosecution agreement on criminal charges in which BP will submit to independent ethics monitoring by a federal government appointee.
The settlement removes another hangover from the leadership of Lord Browne. How many more are there to go?