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Jul 2, 2010 11:41 AM by David Ortiviz, News First 5

Settlement in lawsuit accusing BP of burning turtles

A federal judge says a settlement has been reached in a lawsuit that accused BP of killing turtles as it burns oil from its blown-out Gulf well.

U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier said Friday that lawyers would be in court later in the day to announce details. The lawsuit filed Wednesday by the Animal Welfare Institute and other groups said they were virtually certain turtles have been caught and burned in the corrals BP is using to capture and burn oil.

The lawsuit accused BP PLC of violating the Endangered Species Act.

Mark Proegler, a spokesman for the oil giant, said Thursday that the company has tried to avoid accidentally burning turtles. He said crews in boats look for turtles before oil is burned. He said they can stop the burns if any turtles are spotted.

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