While it is typically unusual for employees to be prosecuted by the federal government for safety violations, it does happen. Hughie Elbert Stover, age 60, knows this all too well. The trial of a former chief of security for a West Virginia coal mine, whose explosion last year left 29 workers dead, began yesterday, the charges ranging from lying to federal investigators to destroying evidence.
The charges stem from the information provided to the federal government by former employees. One employee testified that Mr. Stover directed him to destroy thousands of documents related to mine safety and security in the middle of the federal investigation. Other employees have testified that Mr. Stover trained security guards to warn mine personnel of safety inspectors, putting them on notice of an impending inspection. Supporting documentation even suggests that the mine used multiple sets of books to conceal safety violations from inspectors.
Does your employer ask you to violate what you know, or believe to be, a safety regulation? Do you believe your employer is asking you to participate in unethical or even illegal activities in regard to safety standards? Call The Harman Firm today to explore your rights.