Legal trouble continues to haunt Chesapeake Energy as mineral owners dispute royalty payments and contracts. This week, white tailed deer are at the center of another lawsuit that is now in a San Antonio court.
A recent lawsuit filed in January, claims that a Chesapeake employee hunted, killed and removed the white-tailed deer that roamed the Dimmett County property of James Birkner. Birkner’s lease with Chesapeake dates from 2010 and does not authorize hunting by Chesapeake employees on this land. Once the allegations were made, the company abruptly ended negotiations to renew its lease and vanished from the property. The claims against Chesapeake include negligence, trespass and breach of contract.
The company has other legal trouble. In January, the company agreed to pay $119 million to settle a class action suite from 2013 that included thousands of royalty owners involving possibly 10,000 wells. And, most recently, a group of landowners in Bradford County, PA filed a suit alleging that Chesapeake and Williams Partners violated antitrust laws by conspired to restrain trade in the market for gas gathering services.
In February, Chesapeake filed a lawsuit against American Energy Partners alleging that ex CEO Aubrey McClendon stole confidential documents including maps of oil and gas prospects before leaving the company in 2013. Read more here
With more and more Texas lease holders scrutinizing their royalty statements the company may have more to worry about.
Read more: Mineral Owners Race the Clock in Texas
Chesapeake is active all across the Eagle Ford including Atascosa County, Dimmit County, Duval County, Frio County, Goliad County, LaSalle County, McMullen County, Washington County, Webb County and Zavala County.