(Bloomberg) -- BP has been complaining for a long time thatmany claims filed after its April 2010 oil spill in the Gulfof Mexico were phony. Now there's more evidence to back thatup.

BP has admitted fault in connection with the huge spill and isin the process of paying out tens of billions of dollars ingovernment and individual claims, some civil and some criminal. Atthe same time, however, the British oil giant says that manyof the demands made against its various claim funds have had scant,if any, connection to the catastrophe that killed 11 rig workersand spewed oil off the shore of Louisiana and other gulfstates.

In the single most egregious case of alleged fraud, BP suedMikal Watts in December 2013, alleging that the powerful SanAntonio plaintiffs' attorney falsely claimed to represent tens ofthousands of "phantom" victims of the spill. A federal judge putthat suit on hold while federal criminal investigators looked intothe matter, and now U.S. prosecutors in Mississippi have unsealedan indictment of Watts, his brother, and five others on 95 countsof conspiracy, mail fraud, and identity theft for allegedlysubmitting more than 40,000 false claims against BP.

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