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Chesapeake shareholder files lawsuit over its corporate jet policy

Gilberta S. Norris contends Chesapeake Energy Corp. has wasted millions of dollars by allowing senior executives and board members to use corporate jets for personal trips.
by Jay F. Marks Published: May 9, 2012
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Chesapeake jet policy draws shareholder suit

A Chesapeake Energy Corp. shareholder on Tuesday filed a lawsuit against the company over its corporate jet policy.

Gilberta S. Norris contends the company has wasted millions of dollars by allowing senior executives and board members to use corporate jets for personal trips.

Chesapeake reported that its executives and board members made nearly $14 million worth of flights on company planes between 2007 and 2011, according to the lawsuit, but Norris' attorneys contend internal company documents show the undisclosed fixed costs add another $10 million or more a year.

Details of what was contained in the internal documents were redacted. Attorney Hung Ta said the full lawsuit was filed under seal because of a confidentiality agreement with Chesapeake after Norris obtained the documents under a books and records demand.

The lawsuit seeks damages from Chesapeake chairman Aubrey McClendon and the board on behalf of the company.

Norris, a Virginia resident, has been a Chesapeake shareholder since October 2008, according to the lawsuit in Oklahoma County District Court.

It is one of about a dozen lawsuits filed against Chesapeake's board in the past few weeks.

Most stem from reports of loans McClendon obtained to buy a personal stake in company wells. The loans, which were secured by his share of the wells, came from a private equity firm that has dealings with Chesapeake.

by Jay F. Marks
Energy Reporter
Jay F. Marks has been covering Oklahoma news since graduating from Oklahoma State University in 1996. He worked in Sulphur and Enid before joining The Oklahoman in 2005. Marks has been covering the energy industry since 2009.
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