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Former Arch Coal employee pleads guilty to taking $230,000 in kickbacks

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Former Arch Coal employee pleads guilty to taking $230,000 in kickbacks

Chadwick Lusk of Logan County, W.Va., pleaded guilty in federal court Dec. 13 to defrauding Arch Coal Inc. unit Mingo Logan Coal Co. by receiving illegal cash kickbacks in his role as a purchasing agent at the Mountain Laurel Mining Complex.

Between September 2009 and March 2014, Lusk received around $230,000 from Gary Roeher, owner of CM Supply Co., who gave Lusk a portion of the profits for the crib blocks purchased by Mingo Logan for use at the complex, according to a Dec. 13 news release. Crib blocks are used to provide roof support in underground mines.

Lusk agreed to pay the same amount back as part of his plea agreement. He faces up to 20 years in federal prison and will be sentenced on Feb. 3, 2017.

In 2014, 10 people were charged after an investigation of illegal kickbacks at the Logan County mining operation. In 2015, an employee was sentenced to six months in prison in connection with a different kickback scheme in the Mountain Laurel Mining Complex.