Blankenship Trial Delayed Until April

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A federal judge is delaying a trial until April for a former West Virginia coal baron facing criminal charges.

In U.S. District Court in Beckley, a docket entry Monday says Judge Irene Berger rescheduled ex-Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship’s trial until April 20. It was slated for Jan. 26.

A pretrial hearing originally scheduled for Tuesday will be March 3 instead.

In a previous hearing, Blankenship’s attorneys said the trial should be delayed a year. Federal prosecutors opposed a lengthy delay.

Blankenship is charged with conspiring to violate safety and health standards at Upper Big Branch Mine in southern West Virginia, where a 2010 explosion killed 29 men.

Blankenship’s attorneys have also said they want the case moved out of southern West Virginia, which prosecutors oppose.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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