West Virginia: Mine Official Pleads Guilty to Fraud Charge

The New York Times on March 29, 2012 released the following:


The former superintendent of the Upper Big Branch mine, where an explosion killed 29 workers, pleaded guilty Thursday to a federal fraud charge. Gary May of Bloomingrose, the highest-ranking Massey Energy official charged in connection with the blast, faces up to five years in prison when sentenced Aug. 9. He pleaded guilty before Judge Irene Berger of Federal District Court to conspiracy to defraud the federal government. Prosecutors said he manipulated the mine ventilation system during inspections to fool safety officials and disabled a methane monitor on a cutting machine a few months before the explosion on April 5, 2010. Prosecutors have accused Massey of violating a host of safety laws out of a desire to put production and profits first.”


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