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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                                                                          Feb. 22, 2012                   

UPPER BIG BRANCH MINE SUPERINTENDENT CHARGED WITH FELONY CONSPIRACY

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Gary May, 43, of Bloomingrose, West Virginia, was charged today with conspiring to impede the Mine Safety and Health Administration's enforcement efforts at Massey Energy Company's Upper Big Branch mine (UBB) between February 2008 and April 5, 2010. UBB was the site of a fatal explosion on April 5, 2010. May was the mine's Superintendent at the time of the explosion.

An Information filed by United States Attorney Booth Goodwin alleges that May conspired to defraud the United States by impeding MSHA in carrying out its lawful functions, a felony violation of 18 U.S.C. § 371. The offense charged in the Information carries a potential penalty of up to five years' imprisonment.

"Today's charge is a significant step in the investigation of events at the Upper Big Branch mine," said Goodwin. "Our investigation of those events remains ongoing."

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the United States Department of Labor's Office of Inspector General are handling the investigation.

*Click here to view a copy of the Information*

*Click here to listen to an audio clip provided by U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin regarding today's charge*

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