Patriot Coal Seeks to Keep Reorganization in New York

Patriot Coal Corp., its official creditors’ committee and senior creditors today will ask a bankruptcy judge to keep the coal producer’s reorganization in New York after a hearing ended yesterday without a decision.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Shelley C. Chapman yesterday heard lawyers from the mine workers’ union and U.S. Trustee argue that the case should be sent to West Virginia, where eight of Patriot’s 12 coal mines are located. Chapman said she might send the case to St. Louis, home to Patriot’s headquarters, if she decides Manhattan is the wrong venue.

The union and the Justice Department’s bankruptcy watchdog contend in court papers that Patriot had no connections with New York until two units were incorporated there about five weeks before the July 9 Chapter 11 filing.

Patriot listed assets of $3.57 billion and debt of $3.07 billion as of May 31 in court papers.

The case is In re Patriot Coal Corp., 12-12900, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

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