Pension Funds Named as BP Oil Spill Suit Lead Plaintiffs

December 29, 2010 ( – A federal judge in Texas has tapped the New York and Ohio state pension funds to serve as lead plaintiffs in the litigation over the BP Gulf oil spill.

Bloomberg reported that U.S. District Judge Keith P. Ellison of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas said the two funds will represent investors who bought either BP common stock or American depositary receipts from June 2005 to June 2010.

 Ellison also named four individual investors as lead plaintiffs for a smaller class of investors who bought common shares of London-based BP or ADRs from March 2009 to April 20, 2010 when Deepwater Horizon rig exploded and sparked a massive oil spill.

The state pension funds “argue more generally that BP made fraudulent statements between 2005 and 2010 about its safety precautions in the Gulf of Mexico and elsewhere,’’ Ellison said in an order, according to Bloomberg (see Pension Plans Pursue Lead Plaintiff Status in BP Shareholder Suit).

The case is In Re: BP P.L.C. Securities Litigation, 4:10- md-2185, U.S. District Courts, Southern District of Texas.