Judge does not dismiss Massey defamation suit

VIRGINIA judge Randy Bellows declined to dismiss a defamation lawsuit filed by Massey Energy against a West Virginia political advocacy group.
Judge does not dismiss Massey defamation suit Judge does not dismiss Massey defamation suit Judge does not dismiss Massey defamation suit Judge does not dismiss Massey defamation suit Judge does not dismiss Massey defamation suit

 

Staff Reporter

The West Virginia Consumers for Justice group argued Massey’s case should be dismissed as it was not active in Virginia during last year's election campaign, Associated Press Newswires reported.

Massey alleges that television ads purchased by the Consumers for Justice were broadcast into at least 18,000 Virginia homes and that the group received "substantial revenue" from the United Mine Workers of America.

Massey claims the ads contained defamatory statements alleging Massey contaminated drinking water in West Virginia and unfairly terminated miners' employment and benefits. Massey is seeking $US300 million in damages.

The group's attorneys argued that contacts between the Consumers for Justice and the UMWA were "at best, sporadic”. Judge Bellows ruled that while the contacts were limited in nature, they were sufficient to survive this jurisdictional challenge.

Massey is also suing the UMWA, and company president and chief executive officer Don Blankenship is suing The Charleston Gazette.

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