Former BP plc engineer Kurt Mix of Katy, Texas, was arrested Tuesday and charged with two counts of obstructing justice.
Mix is accused of deleting hundreds of text messages from his iPhone containing evidence requested by federal criminal authorities who were investigating the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
The text messages allegedly reveal Mix going into detail about how much oil was running into the Gulf of Mexico while BP tried to halt the Deepwater Horizon spill in the spring of 2010.
The arrest was made on two counts of obstruction of justice after a criminal complaint was filed in the Eastern District of Louisiana and unsealed Tuesday.
Attorney General Eric Holder said, "The department has filed initial charges in its investigation into the Deepwater Horizon disaster against an individual for allegedly deleting records relating to the amount of oil flowing from the Macondo well after the explosion that led to the devastating tragedy in the Gulf of Mexico."
"The Deepwater Horizon Task Force is continuing its investigation into the explosion and will hold accountable those who violated the law in connection with the largest environmental disaster in U.S. history," he added.
The arrest is the first criminal charge brought against anyone involved in the oil spill.
A lawyer representing Mix was in Houston federal court Tuesday afternoon and declined to comment. BP also said it wouldn't comment on the charges against Mix.
by RTT Staff Writer
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