A former BP engineer charged with deleting text messages about the company's response to the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is asking for a federal judge's permission to travel freely throughout the U.S. while he is free on bond.

Earlier this month, a magistrate in New Orleans ordered 50-year-old Kurt Mix, of Katy, Texas, to limit his travel to Louisiana, Texas, Massachusetts and New York after a prosecutor claimed he had intended to leave the country for a job in Australia and wouldn't return.

But in a court filing late Thursday, Mix's attorneys argue the travel restrictions aren't warranted because prosecutors haven't shown he poses a flight risk.

U.S. District Judge Stanwood Duval Jr. didn't immediately rule on Mix's request.