Judge dismisses coal company suit against HBO’s John Oliver

U.S. & World
John Oliver_325007

FILE – In this Feb. 28, 2015, file photo, John Oliver speaks in New York. Coal company Murray Energy is suing HBO and its Sunday-night host, John Oliver, for what it says was a “false and malicious broadcast.” Oliver’s 24-minute “Last Week Tonight” coal segment on Sunday, June 18, 2017, criticized the Trump’s administration effort […]

MOUNDSVILLE, WV (AP) – A West Virginia judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought by coal company Murray Energy against HBO host John Oliver.

segment of Oliver’s Sunday show “Last Week Tonight” in June poked fun at Murray Energy CEO Robert Murray, who blames regulatory efforts by the Obama administration for damaging the coal industry. Oliver said the 77-year-old looked like a “geriatric Dr. Evil.”

A Circuit Court judge in Marshall County, West Virginia, ruled on Wednesday that Murray’s company failed to state a claim. The two-page ruling from Senior Judge Jeffrey Cramer was posted online by The Hollywood Reporter.

The Ohio-based company was seeking financial damages and a court order barring rebroadcasts of the segment’s “defamatory statements.”

HBO had argued the show didn’t violate Murray Energy’s rights or those of Murray.

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