Former coal baron Don Blankenship is claiming he was defamed during his failed bid for a U.S. Senate seat in West Virginia and he is now suing multiple news outlets.
Blankenship’s suit was filed Thursday in Mingo County, West Virginia. It names The Associated Press among other large media companies.
Blankenship says news organizations waged a concerted plot to destroy him by erroneously labeling him as a convicted felon or saying he was imprisoned for manslaughter.
Blankenship is the former CEO of Massey Energy, which owned a mine where a 2010 explosion killed 29 workers. He spent a year in federal prison after being convicted of conspiring to break mine safety laws, a misdemeanor.
Blankenship is seeking $12 billion in damages.