Published: Jan 06, 2011 8:52 PM EST
Updated: Jan 06, 2011 5:52 PM EST

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Legal experts say months of investigation by Gulf oil spill panels show there's a greater likelihood that criminal charges will be filed against some of the companies involved.

Several experts made their comments Thursday after part of a presidential oil spill commission's report was released.

The picture painted by that report and others do not blame a single person or group. That means in the end - no one may go to prison for the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history.

 But criminal charges could add to the huge fines the companies like BP, Transocean and Halliburton already face.

 The Justice Department is conducting a criminal probe over the April 20 disaster in the Gulf Mexico, but has not made any announcement about charges.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)