Clairsville-Based Murray Energy Files Lawsuits Against HBO, The New York Times


HBO is not terribly anxious about the lawsuit.

In addition to Oliver, the suit names HBO, Time Warner, and Last Week Tonight's Senior News Producer Charles Wilson for one count each of defamation, false light invasion of privacy and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

"Since this broadcast, Murray Energy and our employees have been harassed and damaged every day since that broadcast of these deliberately untruthful and concocted statements".

The complaint also says the show's segment was "false, injurious, and defamatory", and an "attempt to advance their biases against the coal industry and their disdain for the coal-related policies of the Trump Administration".

Murray has publicly blamed the Obama administration for harming the coal industry.

The provocative segment needled Murray Energy CEO Robert Murray - with Oliver saying the 77-year-old tycoon looked like a "geriatric Dr".

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"An honest conversation about coal and its miners needs to be had", Oliver said, "and we should neither cease nor desist from having it".

"Data shows that the triggering event for the 2007 mine collapse was what is commonly understood as an quake, consistent with Mr. Murray's understanding", Murray's statement regarding the newspaper article reads.

The lawsuit claims that Oliver deliberately omitted facts offered by Murray Energy that, in the company's view, contradicted Oliver's account of the mining accident in Utah. "And before we start, I kind of get why vaccines can creep people out", he said, "although pretty much every medical practice sounds terrifying when you break it down", including the non-medical practice of basic exercise. The person in the squirrel outfit then held up a giant check made out for "three acorns and 18 cents" that was said could be used to pay a settlement in the lawsuit that Murray had already discussed with HBO.

Oliver seemed to know what he was getting himself into even before the segment aired. But, you know what? "I stand by everything I said", during the segment.

In a statement, HBO said: "We have confidence in the staff of Last Week Tonight and do not believe anything in the show this week violated Mr. Murray's or Murray Energy's rights".

Lincoln Bandlow, a Los Angeles media law lawyer at Fox Rothschild, said that Murray's lawsuit is likely to be dismissed by a court because his claims have no legal merit.