Outgoing Alabama Attorney General Troy King last week said he has asked a private law firm to begin preparations for suing BP and other firms responsible for the oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.
“The most horrific and unimaginable environmental disaster in American history continues to float off our shores. It will also be the largest legal disaster ever encountered,” King predicted. “It threatens the funding of our schools, our roads and bridges, our prisons, even Medicaid as tax revenues are impacted by it.”
King did not outline the basis for losses incurred and did not say if any claims submitted by the state had been rejected. But he complained that BP is hiring all available experts in an attempt to thwart Alabama’s ability to prove its case.
He also complained about President Obama’s appointment of independent claims facilitator Ken Feinberg. King said Feinberg has drafted protocols that protect BP’s interests instead of the losses suffered by people affected by the oil spill and King alleged that Feinberg had taken payments from BP.
“The time has come to formally prepare for the legal battle that will be required to defend our state’s interests and recover full compensation from BP, TransOcean, and the other parties legally responsible for this disaster,” King said.
He has hired the Alabama law firm Balch & Bingham LLP to prepare for legal action. King, a Republican, lost his bid for re-election in the June 1 primary.