LAS VEGAS (UPI) — Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy and 18 other people from across the country were indicted for a 2014 armed standoff with federal authorities over grazing cattle.
The U.S. Department of Justice charged Bundy and his supporters with several criminal counts including assault on a federal officer, conspiracy to commit and offense against the United States and aiding and abetting. Bundy and four other people had already been charged, but 14 others were hit with new criminal charges. Among those in the superseding criminal indictment are Cliven Bundy’s sons Ryan, Ammon, David and Melvin.
The charges stem from an April 2014 standoff between Bundy, his supporters and Bureau of Land Management agents, who tried to seize Bundy’s cattle claiming he had been trespassing for decades by allowing his animals to graze without paying federal fees.
The indictment said Bundy and his followers used “force, threats, and intimidation to stop the impoundment, flooding the Internet with false and deceitful images and statements to the effect that law enforcement officers were abusing Bundy and stealing his cattle.”
Faced with hundreds of armed Bundy suppporters, law enforcement backed down.
Attorney General Loretta Lynch said, “Today’s actions make clear that we will not tolerate the use of threats or force against federal agents who are doing their jobs. We will continue to protect public land on behalf of the American people, uphold federal law, and ensure that those who employ violence to express their grievances with the government will be apprehended and held accountable for their crimes.”
The new charges come weeks after Cliven Bundy was arrested after arriving in Oregon, where his son Ammon Bundy was behind a standoff with federal authorities at an Oregon wildlife refuge. That five-week siege ended with two dozen people charged in the takeover of Malheur Wildlife Refuge.
Copyright 2015 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.
This content is published through a licensing agreement with Acquire Media using its NewsEdge technology.