In this week's episode of the podcast "Blankenship on Trial," host Scott Finn discusses the first major witness to take the stand- former Massey Energy executive David Hughart- with reporter Ashton Marra and former Assistant U.S. Attorney Mike Hissam.
Hughart was the president of Green Valley, a Massey coal group, who oversaw the production of three mines. He testified he was under immense pressure from the top down to produce coal at his mines that were often understaffed.
Hughart testified he directed his employees to call underground and warn miners when a federal Mine Safety and Health Administration inspector was on site, a practice that is illegal, after being told do so by his supervisors, including Massey COO Chris Adkins.
The third week of the trial also brought the first audio evidence, recordings of phone calls between Don Blankenship and other Massey officials, and Scott Finn discusses the impact the trial is having on the families with Charleston Gazette-Mail reporter Joel Ebert.