Anadarko Petroleum Corp., Kerr-McGee Corp. and their affiliates have agreed to pay the United States more than $17 million to resolve claims of knowingly underpaying royalties on natural gas produced from federal and Indian leases, the Justice Department announced Monday.
Anadarko, which acquired Kerr-McGee in 2006, faced separate allegations of violating the False Claims Act in the case that began in 1996.
Case about royalties
“This case is one in a series of significant oil and gas settlements that demonstrate our commitment to ensuring that companies pay all of the royalties they owe,” said Tony West, assistant attorney general for the civil division of the Department of Justice. “When companies pay natural gas royalties for the privilege to extract nonrenewable resources from public lands, that income supports vital federal programs from which we all benefit.”
Kerr-McGee and Anadarko were named in a lawsuit filed by whistle-blower Harrold Wright, who is now deceased. His claims have resulted in settlements totaling more than $249 million.