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R. Booth Goodwin II, United States Attorney
Southern District of West Virginia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                               CONTACT: Melvin Smith
June 21, 2011                                                                                                                   melvin.smith@usdoj.gov

FORMER BIG RIVER MINING EMPLOYEE SENTENCED FOR MAKING FALSE STATEMENTS

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Neil Hasen, 31, of Alkol, Lincoln County, West Virginia, was sentenced today to three years probation and six months of community confinement by United States District Judge Robert C. Chambers for making a false statement on an on-shift examination form which is required to be maintained in accordance with the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977.  Hasen was employed by Big River Mining, LLC, at the Broad Run Mine in Mason County, West Virginia, throughout February 2009.  During that time, the defendant acted as an assistant foreman and signed forms indicating pre-shift and on-shift mine examinations had been properly completed.  Hasen admitted that he was not certified as an assistant foreman and was using another foreman's number to certify that the examinations had been completed.  

Hasen further admitted that he was not qualified to perform the examinations or to certify that they had been performed lawfully.  On February 4, 2009, Hasen signed an on-shift report indicating that he had properly examined a section of the mine, and, in doing so, falsely listed his foreman's number on the on-shift report.  The defendant further admitted to using the unauthorized foreman number on more than two dozen occasions.

The investigation was conducted by the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration.  Assistant United States Attorney Blaire Malkin handled the prosecution. 

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