West Virginia Record

Monday, February 24, 2020

Ripley property owners claim Columbia Gas is illegally storing, removing gas from their land

Federal Court

By Marian Johns | Nov 18, 2019

Natural gas 01

CHARLESTON – Several owners of property in Ripley near a Columbia Gas storage field claim the company is illegally storing and removing gas from their land and failed to get permission from the property owners. 

Roderick Parsons, Charles Hunt, Brenda Hunt, Jerry Cunningham, Belinda Cunningham and others filed a class action complaint in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia at Charleston against Columbia Gas Transmission LLC and Columbia Pipeline Group Services Co. alleging trespass, conversion, unjust enrichment and inverse condemnation.

"Upon information and belief, Columbia (previously known as Columbia Gas Transmission Corp.) has been storing natural gas and removing natural gas illegally and without the actual or constructive knowledge, permission or agreement of the plaintiffs since on or before 1971 and as early as March 23, 1953," the plaintiffs allege in their complaint. 

The plaintiffs allege Columbia has not reached an agreement with them regarding compensation and has not acquired storage rights by contract or by eminent domain.

The plaintiffs seek compensation, a trial by jury, an injunction against Columbia and all other just relief. They are represented by Christopher Pence and James McHugh of The Hardy Pence Law Firm PLLC in Charleston and Robert Fisher of The Adams, Fisher & Chappell Law Firm PLC in Ripley. 

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia at Charleston case number 2:19-CV-00649

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U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia Charleston Division

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