massey owners to pay $209 million fine

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Joined: 13-10-05
Dec 6 2011 19:56
massey owners to pay $209 million fine

it won't bring back the dead, but it's a big one.
massey execs still open to prosecution individually, which is nice and a surprise, but there's some immunity involved, which is unpleasant and predictable.

That amount includes $46.5 million allocated to the families of the victims and those who were injured in the blast, and includes terms that protect Alpha — but not individual Massey executives — from prosecution, said Steven Ruby, an assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of West Virginia.

The settlement, first reported by the Charleston Gazette, follows months of investigative work by federal officials from the Departments of Justice and Labor, as well as an independent commission appointed by the former West Virginia governor. The findings that had been made public placed the blame for the blast squarely on Massey and what investigators said was its reckless disregard for safety standards, but had stopped short of assigning criminal blame.


“It’s a record-level settlement,” said a former federal mine safety chief, J. Davitt McAteer, who conducted the independent state investigation, which issued the first findings about the explosion this year. “This is an amount that will get companies to pay attention. It has to affect their bottom line, otherwise it doesn’t mean anything.”