Judge gives inspectors more time in Massey lawsuit

BECKLEY, W.Va. (AP) - Shareholders who say they were deliberately misled about Massey Energy's safety record before the Upper Big Branch mine disaster are getting more time to prepare their case.

U.S. District Judge Irene Berger granted a three-week extension Tuesday, giving investors until July 3 to file a report on the evidence they'll use.

She set a scheduling conference for July 12.

The plaintiffs wanted current deadlines waived because some evidence remains off limits while a criminal investigation continues into the 2010 explosion killed 29 men.

Investors led by the Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Trust told Berger they're negotiating with federal prosecutors to release at least some evidence.

But Berger says no agreement has yet been reached.

The lawsuit contends Massey repeatedly lied to investors, artificially inflating stock prices between 2008 and 2010.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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