April 15, 2016 - 2:20 PM EDT
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U.S. Justice Department drops SandRidge Energy investigation

April 15--SandRidge Energy Inc. is no longer the target of a U.S. Department of Justice antitrust investigation.

The Oklahoma City-based oil and natural gas company said Friday the government has dropped its grand jury investigation of possible antitrust violations in the purchase or lease of land, oil or natural gas rights from 2012 and prior years.

A SandRidge spokesman declined further comment Friday beyond the company's one-sentence regulatory filing.

While SandRidge is no longer being investigated, a Justice Department spokesman said Friday the investigation into the oil and natural gas industry is ongoing.

SandRidge previously disclosed that in December 2013 it received a subpoena from the Justice Department concerning the federal investigation. In April 2015, the Justice Department told the company the grand jury in the western district of Oklahoma was involved.

The same federal grand jury last month indicted former Chesapeake Energy Corp. CEO Aubrey McClendon on charges of conspiring to rig bids for oil and natural gas leases in northwest Oklahoma. Those charges were dismissed after McClendon died in a car crash a day later.

A Chesapeake spokesman said at the time that the company was cooperating with the investigation and that it received conditional leniency under the Anitrust Division's Leniency Program.

While the dropped investigation relieves some concerns for SandRidge and its shareholders, the company still faces financial challenges. SandRidge last month said it is considering reorganization under Chapter 11 bankruptcy because of high debt levels and low oil and natural gas prices.

The company said in a March 30 regulatory filing "there is substantial doubt regarding the company's ability to continue as a going concern as it is currently structured."

SandRidge shares slipped less than a penny Friday to close at 6.95 cents a share.


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Source: Equities.com News (April 15, 2016 - 2:20 PM EDT)

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