WHEELING – An Ohio County woman says Chesapeake Appalachia offered her money for land and oil and gas royalties only to cancel the deal once rights of way agreements had been signed.
Ladonna Martin-Evans, through her daughter and power of attorney Stacey D. Evans, filed a lawsuit May 20 in Ohio Circuit Court against Chesapeake Appalachia and its representative, Donald J. Schreckengost, alleging breach of contract, estoppel, unjust enrichment and fraud.
According to the complaint, on Dec. 2, 2010, Martin-Evans and her daughter entered an oil and gas lease agreement with Chesapeake Appalachia involving a 68-acre tract of land. After negotiations, the agreement was settled for $3,000 per acre, plus an 18 percent royalty on the subsurface mineral rights, the suit says.
Once the plaintiffs accepted the deal, the suit says Chesapeake withdrew the offer. However, the plaintiffs allege they had also entered into various rights of way agreements with Chesapeake to their disadvantage.
The plaintiffs seek punitive and compensatory damages, plus litigation costs and interest. The suit also demands the defendants disgorge all profits gained from the allegedly fraudulent deal. They are being represented by attorney George N. Sidiropolis of the McMechen law firm Sidropolis Law. The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge James P. Mazzone.
Ohio Circuit Court case number 15-C-149