Thursday, June 30, 2005

U.S. Declines To Prosecute Shell For Reserves Overstatement

Was this a surprise?
The US Department of Justice said June 29 that it will not prosecute Royal Dutch/Shell Group for a series of oil and gas reserves estimates writedowns, which were announced last year for statistics from 2002 and 2003.

US Attorney David Kelley, who represents the Southern District of New York, said the fact that Shell agreed to pay $120 million to settle fraud charges with the US Securities and Exchange Commission contributed to his office's decision against prosecution (OGJ Online, July 29, 2004).

Okay, so it was essentially a question of double jeopardy -- kind of. Still, I wonder how many favors they pulled in the Bush Administration to get this one done.