Judge sides with Exxon over state gas station operators

November 10, 2009

A federal judge has sided with ExxonMobil Corp. in a case where 65 Maryland gas station operators recently sought to block the oil company from potentially selling their franchises out from under them. The gas station operators, who lease the stations across Maryland from ExxonMobil, filed a lawsuit in September to block what they believed was an imminent sale of their businesses. The station operators have alleged that Exxon is violating laws that would require the company to give the gas station operators the first right to buy the stations. In his ruling Friday, Judge Alexander Williams Jr. of the U.S. District Court in Greenbelt decided that because Exxon had not yet made moves to sell those gas stations, he could not decide on whether a potential transaction would violate federal law.

-Gus G. Sentementes

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