Mar 04, 2015
Baton Rouge - Jeffrey Nolan, Manager of DEQ’s Criminal Investigation Division, was recognized Tuesday by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for Excellence in Criminal Enforcement in the investigation of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill that occurred in April 2010.
Nolan was commended for his work on the federal criminal Deepwater Horizon Task Force that investigated the oil spill and its aftermath. He conducted numerous witness interviews, collected evidence and took samples of tar balls that were discovered on Fourchon Beach following Tropical Storm Lee. Subsequent analysis proved the tar oils were formed with oil from the Deepwater Horizon well.
“Jeff made a significant contribution to the Deepwater Horizon investigation and spent countless hours gathering information in support of the prosecution effort,” DEQ Secretary Peggy Hatch said. “He was instrumental in plotting sampling points on maps which were used to assist the prosecutors in their investigation. As a result of the pleas in the criminal case, Louisiana will receive billions of dollars that will be used for coastal restoration efforts.”
His supervisor on the task force, Vernon Jackson, Assistant Special Agent in Charge with the U.S. EPA Criminal Investigation Division, said that Nolan was “dependable and consistent in the production of his investigative products” and that he made a “superior contribution to the case.”
Nolan was the only state investigator on the task force, which included federal law enforcement personnel from the U.S. EPA-CID, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, FBI, U.S. Department of the Interior, and the U.S. Coast Guard Investigative Service.