Donald Blankenship was the most powerful coal mogul in America, but he could soon be indicted, thanks to 14 years of work by two Pittsburgh lawyers. By Laurence Leamer, the author of the new book The Price of Justice.
Although the investigation began by exploring what role Massey supervisors and executives had in the 2010 explosion at their Upper Big Branch mine, the feds have gone on to look into a wide range of devastating accusations against Blankenship. This is a daring inquiry into the dark heart of power at Massey and in West Virginia. If only a portion of what they are exploring is true and Goodwin has the guts to stick to it, in the next couple of months Blankenship may be indicted with a series of charges that will shake up the Mountain State as few things have in years. If Goodwin decides not to indict and cuts a deal to help his anticipated run for governor next year with the backing of Big Coal, as the most fervid cynics suggest, he will have to defend his conduct from Bluefield to Wheeling. But everything so far suggests that the investigation has led inevitably and inexorably to Blankenship, and that Goodwin and his associates will not be walking away without an indictment.There's no such thing as "clean coal". On any level. This might help on one.
Blankenship may very well be indicted in the next few weeks and if the evidence is strong and well presented, he will be convicted and sent to prison. That will send a signal to the entire Appalachian region that no longer can corporate and political mandarins run roughshod over the rights of the people.
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