From the 2010 News Archive
Prof. Barrett Op-Ed Calls for BP Criminal Prosecution
Prof. Jane Barrett, director of the Law School's Environmental Law Clinic
, published an op-ed in the July 1 Baltimore Sun
, calling for criminal prosecution of BP executives. Citing examples of past BP actions, Barrett called the corporation "a blatant repeat offender - a serial criminal."
"The multi-million dollar criminal fines paid by BP did nothing to deter its risky ongoing conduct. The fines were simply a cost of doing business for BP. The only way to change this dynamic is to not only charge the corporation but also those individuals responsible for the corporate crime," Barrett wrote.
Read Professor Barrett's op-ed
"Although there is an ongoing criminal investigation, it is not clear what federal resources are committed to this effort," she wrote. "After the collapse of Enron, the Department of Justice set up the Enron Task Force and brought in some of the best prosecutors, investigators and experts from across the country to handle the investigation and prosecutions. No expense was spared. Nothing less should be done in this case. The Deepwater Horizon disaster dwarfs all of the financial fraud investigations of the past decade in terms of victims impacted, lives lost, destruction of our natural resources and damage to the economic engines of an entire region of this country."
has more than 30 years of experience in all aspects of environmental law. She has served as an attorney with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Maryland Attorney General’s Office, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland. She has played a major role in many significant environmental cases and is recognized as one of the most experienced environmental criminal litigators in the country.
While an Assistant U.S. Attorney, Professor Barrett obtained the first criminal conviction of senior federal employees for knowing violations of environmental laws. Before joining the law school, Prof. barrett was a partner in the Washington, DC office of Blank Rome, LLP, where she chaired the White Collar, Internal and Government Investigations Group.