Grand Jury Indicts Texas Pipeline Company, Employee in Refugio State Beach Oil Spill

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Authorities responded to an oil slick in the ocean off Refugio State Beach in Santa Barbara County on May 19, 2015. (Credit: KTLA)

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A grand jury has indicted an oil pipeline company and one of its employees on criminal charges related to a massive oil spill last year in Santa Barbara County, prosecutors announced Tuesday.

Plains All-American Pipeline has been indicted on 46 criminal charges, including four felony counts, while a single employee of the Houston-based company was indicted on three criminal charges relating to the 2015 spill, according to Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris and Santa Barbara County Dist. Atty. Joyce Dudley.

Both state and local prosecutors had been investigating possible wrongdoing related to the pipe rupture, which sent oil onto beaches and into the ocean.

Plains faces up to $2.8 million in fines plus additional costs and penalties, prosecutors said.

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