BECKLEY, W.Va. (AP) - The former superintendent of the Upper Big
Branch mine is now set to enter a plea on March 29.
U.S. District Judge Irene Berger issued an order Tuesday,
scheduling Gary May for a 9 a.m. hearing in Beckley.
May has been charged with conspiracy to defraud the federal
government and is apparently cooperating with federal prosecutors
in a continuing criminal investigation of the 2010 explosion that
killed 29 men.
The blast at the former Massey Energy near Montcoal mine was the
worst U.S. coal mining disaster in four decades.
The Bloomingrose resident is the highest-ranking company
official charged in connection with the blast.
May was accused, among other things, of disabling a methane gas
monitor, falsifying safety records and using code words to tip off
miners underground about surprise inspections.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)