Grabar Law Office In The News: Peabody Energy Investor Demands Records Of Coal Mine Fire

An investor in Peabody Energy Corp., the largest coal mine operator in the U.S., wants to investigate the company for possible mismanagement after the board allegedly misled shareholders about the financial impact of a devastating fire at one of its mines in Australia, according to a books and records lawsuit filed in the Delaware Chancery Court.

A fire erupted at the North Goonyella mine in Queensland on Sept. 22, 2018, and Peabody waited to inform shareholders until it had been burning for six days, even though the company released other news about elevated gas levels at the site. An Investor wants to inspect the minutes of all board meetings since April 2017 during which safety at the mine was discussed, among other internal documents, and he said the company is unlawfully denying his demand.

In light of Australian investigators’ findings that “Peabody had deficient safety systems at the North Goonyella mine, plaintiff seeks the books and records necessary to assess whether Peabody’s directors … have fully complied with their fiduciary duties by ensuring that adequate safety systems are in place at the company’s mines and that all public statements concerning such operations are not materially false and misleading,” the lawsuit said.

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