BOSTON – Twelve whistleblowing crew members each were awarded $437,500 Wednesday as part of a $37 million settlement, the largest ever, involving deliberate ocean pollution from ships owned by one of the world’s largest publicly traded oil tanker companies.
U.S. District Judge Reginald Lindsay agreed to the awards and imposed the sentence Wednesday in a plea agreement reached in December between Overseas Shipholding Group Inc. and federal prosecutors. OSG must pay $27 million for violations in Boston, Portland, Maine, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Wilmington, N.C.
OSG agreed to pay another $10 million in January after pleading guilty to additional charges in Beaumont, Texas. The sentence there has not yet been imposed.
The company admitted to systematically dumping hundreds of thousands of gallons of sludge and waste oil into the ocean and deliberately altering logbooks to conceal the illegal discharges.