SUPREME COURT (AP) - Exxon Mobil wants the Supreme Court to
throw out 2.5 billion dollars in punitive damages assessed against
it in the Exxon Valdez disaster nearly 19 years ago.
The supertanker missed a turn and dumped 11 million gallons of
oil into Alaska's Prince William Sound. It stands as the worst oil
spill in U.S. history.
Initially a jury awarded 287 million dollars to compensate
fishermen, Native Alaskans, landowners, businesses and local
governments for economic losses. It also awarded five billion
dollars in punitive damages, although a federal appeals court later
cut that back to 2.5 billion.
Exxon says it has handed out 3.4 billion dollars in fines,
penalties, cleanup costs, claims and other expenses.
The company also says it should not be held accountable for
Captain Joseph Hazelwood's reckless conduct.
(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)