In his most wide-ranging remarks on the Gulf Coast oil spill, Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. said Tuesday that the Justice Department is considering both criminal and civil penalties against those responsible for the disaster.

Holder spoke in New Orleans after spending the day meeting with state attorneys general and U.S. attorneys from the affected states. He said that federal prosecutors are reviewing an array of laws that might apply, including “traditional criminal statutes” and such environmental statutes as the Clean Water Act.

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