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Civil settlement coming today in S.F. bay oil spill

State and federal officials are expected to announce a civil settlement Monday in the 2007 Cosco Busan oil spill in the San Francisco Bay.

State Attorney General Kamala Harris and U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar will be among those at a 1 p.m. press conference on Treasure Island.

Details were not released but a written statement from the attorney general described it as a "major civil settlement."

The spill happened Nov. 7, 2007 when the container ship piloted by John Cota, 63, of Petaluma, struck the bridge's tower fender in thick fog. More than 53,000 gallons of heavy, toxic bunker fuel poured into the water, killing thousands of birds and disrupting commercial fishing off miles of coastline.

Federal officials put the damage at $20 million. Cota was sentenced to 10 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor count of violating the Clean Water Act.


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