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Blankenship Bond Reduced, Travel Restrictions Lifted

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Kara Lofton
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West Virginia Public Broadcasting
Former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship leaving the Charleston Federal Courthouse during his trial.

A judge has reduced ex-Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship's bond and dropped his travel restrictions after his conviction.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Clarke VanDervort in Beckley reduced Blankenship's $5 million bond to $1 million Monday.

VanDervort also dropped restrictions limiting Blankenship's travel to southern West Virginia, Pike County, Kentucky and Washington, D.C.

VanDervort says Blankenship can live at home in Las Vegas and travel throughout the continental United States.

VanDervort ruled Blankenship isn't prohibited anymore from talking to certain people related to the case.

Blankenship was convicted Dec. 3 of a misdemeanor conspiracy to willfully violate mine safety standards at Upper Big Branch, where an explosion killed 29 men in 2010. He faces a year in prison at most.

He was acquitted of felonies that could've stretched his sentence to 30 years.


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