Former Massey Energy CEO Donald Blankenship was given a three-month reprieve to prepare for a criminal trial over an April 2010 explosion that killed 29 miners. The accident at the Upper Big Branch Mine in Montcoal, West Virginia, was the deadliest U.S. mining disaster in almost 40 years. Blankenship is accused of concealing mine safety violations and making false statements to the SEC about the company’s activities. Blankenship has pled not guilty to the charges and is currently free on bail. Blankenship, who left Massey in December 2010 with a $12 million retirement package, is also trying to persuade a Delaware judge in Wilmington to order the company that bought Massey (Alpha Natural Resources Inc.) to pay for his defense costs. If convicted, the 65-year-old Blankenship could face 31 years in prison.
Read more about these developments via Insurance Journal here.