Report: Freedom Industries President 'Bears No Fault' in January Spill

Apr 4, 2014

Credit Aaron Payne / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

An attorney says the president of a company that spilled chemicals into 300,000 West Virginians' water supply "bears no fault" for the incident.
Gary Southern of Freedom Industries on Friday withdrew an application to get paid for work already completed during bankruptcy proceedings. He wanted Freedom and its insurance to cover his legal fees.

A U.S. trustee objected to the legal expenses motion. A creditors committee opposed both.
A court document by Southern attorney Steven Thomas says Southern withdrew the motions to "end the unfounded allegations and ceaseless vilification of him."
It says the January spill occurred six days after Southern became president, "for which he bears no fault."
Southern's motion claims he "could have walked away as many others did," but has spent countless hours remediating the company's damage.