- Associated Press - Thursday, August 27, 2015

CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (AP) - A judge has awarded more than $586,000 in pay and benefits to a retired CONSOL Energy worker who had accused the company of religious discrimination.

U.S. District Judge Frederick Stamp Jr. also prohibited CONSOL and a former subsidiary, Consolidation Coal Co., from committing similar acts in the future.

Stamp’s recent ruling came in a 2013 lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The lawsuit said Beverly Butcher was forced to retire after the companies began using biometric hand scans in 2012 at a mine in Mannington.

The lawsuit said the companies refused to consider alternatives after Butcher told company officials that the hand scans violated his religious beliefs.

In January, a federal jury awarded $150,000 in compensatory damages to Butcher.

Murray Energy bought Consolidation Coal in late 2014.

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