LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) -- A judge has granted federal prosecutor's request to stay proceedings in a lawsuit over the Exxon Mobil Corp.'s oil spill in Mayflower, Ark.
U.S. District Judge James Moody on Thursday granted the request for a stay in the case because of the partial government shutdown.
Prosecutors said in a court document Wednesday that most attorneys with the U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency were unable to work on the case, even on a voluntary basis, because of the lapse in federal funding.
Attorneys for Exxon didn't oppose the stay.
The lawsuit filed jointly by federal prosecutors and Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel seeks civil penalties for the oil spill in a Mayflower subdivision. Exxon's Pegasus pipeline ruptured in March, spilling thousands of barrels of oil into the neighborhood.