I’m just back from a hearing down the street in Kanawha Circuit Court, where Judge Charles King ordered the release of more than 5,300 pages of documents concerning Massey Energy, its merger with Alpha Natural Resources and the Upper Big Branch Mine Disaster.
The judge acted on the request of The Charleston Gazette and NPR. The two news organizations filed a motion opposing the sealing of court records in a lawsuit filed by some Massey shareholder groups. Lawyers Rudy DiTrapano, Sean McGinley and Rob Bastress represented the Gazette and NPR at the hearing.
Massey lawyer Al Emch announced at the hearing that the company would no longer seek confidentiality for most of the roughly 5,500 documents that had been at least temporarily placed under seal. Massey asked that about 119 other pages of records be kept confidential, and Judge King agreed to review those documents more closely before making a ruling.
We are waiting now to actually obtain copies of the records that have been unsealed … so stay tuned …