Judge To Rule On Whether Chesapeake Stands Trial

Wednesday, August 27th 2014, 5:55 pm
By: News 9

A northern Michigan judge says she'll issue a ruling later on whether Chesapeake Energy should stand trial on racketeering charges that accuse it of leasing land to thwart competitors and then canceling the deals when the competition ended.

A probable cause hearing in the criminal case against the Oklahoma City-based company began Aug. 18 and ended Wednesday in Cheboygan District Court. Judge Maria Barton says she'll review the evidence and issue a written opinion later.

8/18/2014 Related Story: Chesapeake Energy Battles Racketeering, Fraud Charges In Michigan

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette filed the charges over land deals in the northern Lower Peninsula.

Chesapeake spokesman Gordon Pennoyer says it's contesting what it calls "baseless allegations."

A Dec. 2 trial is scheduled in a separate antitrust case that accuses Chesapeake of rigging bids at a 2010 state oil and gas lease auction.