Lawsuit against Cobalt likely to be dismissed

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A lawsuit over Cobalt Coal Co.'s alleged failure to pay mining royalties may soon be dismissed.

Cobalt operates the mine featured on Spike TV's one-season reality show "Coal." In August, Encoal Energy and Gopher Land Services sued Cobalt in U.S. District Court in Charleston.

But last week, the parties submitted a joint motion to dismiss the case, acknowledging the federal court has no jurisdiction. Cobalt had recently argued that, saying the companies involved are all in West Virginia.

Encoal and Gopher say Cobalt agreed in 2010 to pay them 4 percent of the average gross sales price per ton of coal sold, as long as it remained under $95 per ton.

They say Cobalt and Westchester Coal LP made some of the promised payments, but they stopped in May.