Associated Press Published

Blankenship Wants Trial Delayed to January


Former coal boss Don Blankenship wants his July trial start delayed until January.

In a motion in Beckley federal court Friday, attorneys for the ex-Massey Energy CEO say they wouldn’t be prepared for a July 13 trial start.

It’s Blankenship’s third request for a delay. The trial was last pushed back from April to July.

Blankenship is charged with conspiring to violate safety standards at Upper Big Branch, a former Massey Energy mine where an explosion killed 29 men in 2010.

Blankenship’s attorneys say they can’t review more than four million pages of discovery produced by the government until late September.

They say they won’t have time to complete fact investigation or prepare trial exhibits, witness examinations and jury presentations.

U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin declined to comment on the motion.