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Mar 22, 2012

Chevron, Transocean charged in Brazilian oil spill

RIO DE JANEIRO/NEW YORK (Reuters) – A Brazilian federal prosecutor filed criminal charges on Wednesday against Chevron and drill-rig operator Transocean for a November oil spill, raising the stakes in a legal saga that has added to Chevron’s woes in Latin America and could slow Brazil’s offshore oil boom.

Prosecutor Eduardo Santos de Oliveira also filed criminal charges against 17 local executives and employees at Chevron and Transocean, owner of the world’s largest oil rig fleet. Among the defendants is George Buck, 46, a U.S. national in charge of Chevron’s operations in Brazil, the prosecutor’s office said in a statement.

Mar 21, 2012

The Brazilian who wants to jail Chevron oilmen

RIO DE JANEIRO/NEW YORK (Reuters) – When federal prosecutor Eduardo Santos de Oliveira heard in November about an oil spill in a Chevron field off Brazil’s coast, he was determined that, this time, the polluters wouldn’t wiggle from his grip.

Time and again over the past decade, targets of his civil and criminal cases have used Brazil’s legal system — with its generous appeals process and rampant delays — to avoid penalties or escape justice, Oliveira told Reuters in two recent interviews. Undeterred, he is now in another major battle.

Mar 21, 2012

Chevron: Brazil oil seep different from old spill

RIO DE JANEIRO/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Chevron (CVX.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the No. 2 oil company, said on Wednesday that oil from a new seabed seep at its Brazilian offshore field is chemically different to crude from a November spill, suggesting the two leaks are unrelated.

Oil from a seep found this month 3 km (1.9 miles) from Chevron’s November seafloor leak — which spilled at least 2,400 barrels and triggered an $11 billion civil lawsuit and pending criminal charges — is “much heavier” and has different chemical properties from crude in the earlier spill, Chevron told Reuters.

Mar 15, 2012

Oil falls as U.S., UK plan oil reserve release

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Oil prices fell as much as $3 a barrel on Thursday after Reuters quoted two UK sources as saying Britain had agreed to cooperate with the United States in releasing strategic oil reserves later this year.

Brent oil fell more than $3 a barrel following the report, later paring losses to $1.72 a barrel and trading at $123.25 by 12:06 p.m. EDT (1606 GMT). U.S. crude reversed earlier gains and fell more than 56 cents a barrel.

Mar 12, 2012

Analysis: Chevron’s Amazon-sized gamble on Latin America

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – George Buck, a slim, towering American who runs Chevron’s (CVX.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) operations in Brazil, is often flanked by lawyers these days.

Since November, when the No. 2 U.S. oil company spilled at least 2,400 barrels of oil offshore Brazil, the local attorneys have helped Buck navigate the legal system, sometimes doubling as Portuguese translators and cultural consultants.

Feb 21, 2012

Oil rises to 9-month high on Greece rescue, Iran cuts

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Oil rose to a nine-month high on Tuesday after Greece received a financial bailout and top Asian consumers moved to cut crude purchases from Iran, following Western sanctions designed to limit the country’s nuclear program.

Euro zone financial ministers agreed to a 130-billion-euro ($172 billion) rescue for Greece to avert a chaotic default, firming the euro and making dollar-denominated commodities cheaper for foreign buyers.

Jan 27, 2012

Exclusive: Chevron to face charges over Brazil spill

CAMPOS, Brazil (Reuters) – A Brazilian prosecutor plans to file criminal charges against Chevron Corp and some of its local managers within weeks, adding the threat of prison sentences to an $11 billion civil lawsuit as punishment for a November offshore oil spill.

The filing in federal court in Campos, Brazil, will likely include a request for criminal indictment of George Buck, chief executive of Chevron’s Brazil unit, as well as other staff, three Brazilian government officials involved in the case told Reuters.

Jan 26, 2012

Chevron to face criminal charges over Brazil spill

CAMPOS, Brazil (Reuters) – A Brazilian prosecutor plans to file criminal charges against Chevron Corp and some of its local managers within weeks, adding the threat of prison sentences to an $11 billion civil lawsuit as punishment for a November offshore oil spill.

The filing in federal court in Campos, Brazil, will likely include a request for criminal indictment of George Buck, chief executive of Chevron’s Brazil unit, as well as other staff, three Brazilian government officials involved in the case told Reuters.

Jan 26, 2012

Exclusive: Chevron to face criminal charges over Brazil spill

CAMPOS, Brazil (Reuters) – A Brazilian prosecutor plans to file criminal charges against Chevron Corp and some of its local managers within weeks, adding the threat of prison sentences to an $11 billion civil lawsuit as punishment for a November offshore oil spill.

The filing in federal court in Campos, Brazil, will likely include a request for criminal indictment of George Buck, chief executive of Chevron’s Brazil unit, as well as other staff, three Brazilian government officials involved in the case told Reuters.

Jan 10, 2012

Oil markets brace for turbulence of index shift

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Amid the drama of Iran, the meltdown of refiner Petroplus and a wave of upbeat economic data, it was all too easy to overlook one of the most important short-term factors shaping oil markets this week: the reweighting of the world’s biggest commodity indexes.

The S&P GSCI Index .SPGSCI and the DJ-UBS Index .DJUBS, the world’s no. 1 and no. 2 commodity indexes, announced two months ago plans to rejig their component weights to reflect growing trade in European benchmark Brent crude, at the expense of U.S. WTI, which some traders say had become detached from global prices.