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A federal judge in New Orleans will preside over the multidistrict litigation arising from the BP oil spill.

The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation on Tuesday ordered the wrongful death and economic and environmental damages actions against BP PLC and other defendants sent to U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier in the Eastern District of Louisiana. The panel’s order said that New Orleans was the “geographic and psychological center of gravity” for the oil spill. Barbier has agreed to hear the cases.

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