CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WOWK) — The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) on Tuesday filed a lawsuit against James “Jay” Justice III, who is Gov. Jim Justice’s (R-WV) son, and 13 coal companies owned by him.
According to the complaint, Justice and the companies owe around $7.6 million in fines for more than 130 violations and more than 50 cessation orders due to “health and safety risks” and possible “environmental harm.”
The civil penalties were assessed by the Department of the Interior Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement. The suit is also looking to collect Abandoned Mine Land reclamation fees and audit debts, according to the DOJ.
The suit is against A & G Coal Corp., Bluestone Coal Corp., Bluestone Oil Corp., Chestnut Land Holdings, LLC, Dynamic Energy, Inc., Frontier Coal Co., Justice Energy Co., Kentucky Fuel Corp., National Coal, LLC, Pay Car Mining, Inc., Premium Coal Company, Inc., S and H Mining, Inc., Tams Management, Inc., and James C. Justice III.
Gov. Jim Justice’s campaign manager released the following statement on May 31.
Joe Biden, Chuck Schumer, and the Democrats have seen the polls that show Jim Justice winning this race, and they’re panicking. So now the Biden Justice Department has decided to play politics. We will see a lot more of this as the Democrats work to help Alex Mooney because they know they can easily beat him.Roman Stauffer, Campaign Manager, Jim Justice for U.S. Senate
According to the Associated Press, Gov. Jim Justice pledged to put his adult children in charge of the family businesses when he became Governor of West Virginia in 2017.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.