Ex-eastern Kentucky mine inspector pleads guilty to bribery

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — A former state mine inspector has pleaded guilty in federal court to taking bribes from former Kentucky lawmaker Keith Hall.

Kelly Shortridge agreed to a plea that was filed in court on Wednesday. It says Shortridge, who worked for the Division of Mine Reclamation and Enforcement, took about $46,000 in bribes from Hall, a coal mine owner who was also a state representative from Phelps.

Documents say that while Shortridge was assigned to inspect mines owned by Hall between 2009 and 2011, "many violations of surface mining reclamation laws went uncited."

Hall lost last year’s Democratic primary for his House seat.

Shortridge faces up to 10 years in prison on a bribery charge. Hall’s federal trial is scheduled for April 20.


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