S&C Obtains Another Win for BP

June 8, 2017

On June 8, S&C obtained dismissals in full of two putative class actions against BP p.l.c., BP America Inc., BP Corporation North America Inc. and several other oil producers. The plaintiffs brought claims under the Commodity Exchange Act (CEA), Sherman Act and state law alleging that defendants engaged in manipulative trades of physical Brent crude oil in Russia, which allegedly were incorporated into a benchmark reported by price reporting agency Platts.

Judge Andrew L. Carter, Jr. of the Southern District of New York dismissed the two complaints on multiple grounds, including because the Commodity Exchange Act claims impermissibly sought to regulate extraterritorial conduct, and because plaintiffs failed to allege antitrust injury or standing.

The S&C team was led by partners Daryl Libow and Amanda Davidoff. The win follows a string of victories by S&C on behalf of BP stemming from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill: the historic $18.7 billion settlement reached in 2015 that resolved all federal and state governmental civil claims; after a favorable decision on summary judgment, settlement of a securities class action for less than 2 percent of plaintiffs’ original damages claims; and the dismissal of derivative and ERISA complaints.