With jury absent, Cliven Bundy supporters give testimony

With the jury box empty, defense attorneys called four witnesses Wednesday in the retrial of four Bunkerville standoff defendants.

U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro allowed three men and one woman, each of whom attended the April 2014 protest, to give proffer statements or a preview of what they might tell a jury. But the judge ruled that jurors should not hear their testimony because none of them offered evidence of self-defense the men on trial hoped to claim.

All of the witnesses testified via Skype.

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Pardon the Bundy Family and their Supporters

No more well-defined example of the injustices wrought by the hands of an out-of-control Federal Government can be found than the case of the Bundy Family from the State of Nevada, whose multiple family members rot in a Federal Prison on this very day.

Our Founding Fathers said that Federal Government was to be limited in power regarding to land use within states, and that states themselves should have the say over how the land was used. This is made crystal clear in the Federalist Papers.
Over time, as if in slow motion, our enumerated Constitutional rights have been eroded, to the point of being unrecognizable today.

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Prosecution to rest in Bunkerville standoff retrial

Prosecutors questioned their final witness Tuesday in the retrial of four Bunkerville standoff defendants, whose attorneys began preparing to present their case to jurors.

U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro said she would allow one potential defense witness, who was at the 2014 armed standoff but not arrested, to give a proffer statement outside the presence of jurors Wednesday, while a private investigator could testify for the defense the next day.

After spending several hours on the witness stand detailing photographs and videos of the standoff and Bunkerville area, FBI special agent Joel Willis, a key government witness, responded to about 15 juror questions.

Navarro answered one question from the panel, indicating they would be able to review exhibits during deliberations.

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Virgin Valley Water District requests Gold Butte reduction

In the desert, water is the paramount resource.

That’s why a large portion of the debate surrounding Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s review of two Nevada national monuments — Gold Butte and Basin and Range — involves access to water rights that exist within the boundaries of both designations.

For the Virgin Valley Water District, five of its six springs are located within the boundaries of Gold Butte National Monument, prompting VVWD General Manager Kevin Brown to formally request that Zinke either remove the springs from the designation, or strengthen the language of the proclamation to allow “unfettered access” to developing the district’s water resources.

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Travis Cox called his refuge occupation ‘hasty decision by an arrogant and ignorant young man’

The youngest Oregon refuge occupier to face indictment acknowledged Monday that he was an “arrogant, ignorant young man” who made an impulsive mistake in going to the bird sanctuary last year and doing guard duty during the armed takeover.

“If I could go back, I wouldn’t do it again,” Travis Cox said, standing beside his lawyer during his sentencing hearing.

He was ordered to serve two years of probation, including two months on home detention, for conspiring to impede federal workers through intimidation, threat or force during the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

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Secretary Zinke: Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument will stay

CEDAR CITY – Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said Friday he is not recommending changes to Arizona’s Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument.

The Arizona reserve, located west of the Grand Canyon, has some of the most pristine geological formations in North America, Zinke said. The formations “show the scientific history of our Earth while containing thousands of years of human relics and fossils,” he said.

Zinke’s decision comes just three months after he was tasked with reviewing a list of 27 national monuments for possible elimination or reduction.

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Antifa, Patriot movement protesters return to Portland waterfront with new tactics

Joey Gibson said at the beginning of the summer protest season that he had turned over a new leaf. The alt-right leader known for bombastic Facebook posts and pugilistic pronouncements advocated a new tactic. He doesn’t want to pick physical fights. He wants conversation.

Gibson used to hurl his conservative message mixed with insults at people on the streets of Portland, but now he hopes to convert the city’s overwhelmingly liberal residents to his Patriot Prayer movement with peace and inclusion. At the same time, he has hosted controversial white supremacist speakers and drawn loud counter-protests.

Gibson, a self-employed Vancouver, Washington, activist, will be back again Sunday on the Portland waterfront with plans to march.

And so will the anti-fascist activists known as antifa who wear black and mask their faces.

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Editorial: Western congressmen seek monument size reductions

Recently the 17 members of the Congressional Western Caucus — which includes Nevada’s Rep. Mark Amodei — took Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke up on his request for feedback on what to do about all the national monuments created in the past two decades, sending him a letter with specific recommendations about 27 of those monuments.

These recommendations called for vastly scaling back the size of two monuments created by President Obama in his last year in office at the urging of then-Sen. Harry Reid — the 300,000-acre Gold Butte in Clark County and the 700,000-acre Basin and Range in Nye and Lincoln counties.

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LaVoy Finicum shooting: Prosecutors seeking missing shell casings, metal fragment from Ryan Bundy’s shoulder

The case against an FBI agent charged with lying about firing two shots at Oregon standoff spokesman Robert “LaVoy” Finicum most likely will turn on expert testimony about the validity of the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office investigation, a defense lawyer said Thursday.

No one reported that they saw or heard agent W. Joseph Astarita fire and no direct evidence exists linking any bullet or shell casing to Astarita’s rifle, one of his lawyers said.

Prosecutors countered that the investigation continues and revealed for the first time that not only are shell casings from Astarita’s alleged shots missing, but so are shell casings from some of the Oregon State Police shots fired at the Jan. 26, 2016, roadblock.

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Gary Hunt: The Bundy Affair #21 Batson Challenge – in the Name of Injustice

In “Liberty or Laws?  – Justice or Despotism?“, I discussed how the case law method provides the government, through judicial proceedings, to move, a decision at a time, away from the intent of the Constitution.  In recent events in the second Tier 3 trial, only two-thirds of the trial was declared a “mistrial”, while the other third was not declared a mistrial.  I say this because the first trial, by the government’s design, included six defendants, all of whom were accused of wielding firearms on April 12, 2014, when the Bureau of Land Management returned the surviving captured cattle to their rightful owner.  Two defendants were found guilty of some of the charges.  The remaining four were not found guilty of any of the charges, though they were also not found not guilty.  So, there was no mistrial on the two, but there was a mistrial in the same singular trial of the other four.

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Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke caps review of monuments with Bunkerville visit

BUNKERVILLE — Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke spoke to reporters Sunday evening in Bunkerville as he wrapped up a much-anticipated visit to Southern Nevada that included a hike at Gold Butte National Monument and a stop at Basin and Range National Monument to see American Indian rock art.

The interior secretary traveled to Nevada to visit the two monuments as part of President Donald Trump’s executive order mandating a review of 22 national monuments and five marine national monuments created by presidential decree since Jan. 1, 1996, to determine whether the designations should be scaled back or eliminated.

Zinke is expected to present Trump with his final recommendations by the end of August.

Speaking outside at a ranch not far from Gold Butte, Zinke offered some insights into criteria for downsizing.

Before Zinke arrived in Bunkerville, Russ Graves voiced concern about the size of the Gold Butte monument.

“I’d just like to see the size reduced,” said Graves. 73, who owns an orchard that is part of a 220-acre ranch.

Whitney Pocket, the Devil’s Throat sinkhole and a few other locations on Gold Butte should be part of the monument, but other parts don’t have antiquities value, he said.

Zinke had planned to stay in Mesquite through Monday to meet with U.S. Rep. Dina Titus, D-Nev., and stakeholders there and in Overton on the fringe of Gold Butte on the last leg of a swing through the West. But he canceled those plans to return to Washington, D.C., for the first Cabinet meeting with new White House Chief of Staff John Kelly.

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Minnesota group targeted in FBI counterterrorism probe

To the FBI, they were part of a Minnesota militia group possibly gearing up for a violent showdown with the government.

Members of the group, called United Patriots of Minnesota 3%, say they’re nothing more than patriots defending hard-won liberties secured by a handful of forefathers who stood against tyranny.

No one has been charged in the investigation, which spilled into public view recently when a federal judge unsealed search warrants in the case. But the probe underscores the complexity of balancing protected speech with trying to root out domestic terror.

Soon after agents kicked in the door to his Red Wing home last December, Jason Thomas documented the aftermath of the raid on Facebook: photos of belongings strewn across his kitchen and a copy of the search warrant, signed by a federal judge, alleging that Thomas and his fellow United Patriots members schemed to illegally obtain and use powerful weapons.

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Interior head to stop in Nevada hometown of standoff family

U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke was expected to make a stop Sunday in the hometown of Cliven Bundy, a Nevada rancher accused of organizing an armed standoff three years ago that forced federal agents to end a roundup of his cattle.

Zinke’s planned stop in Bunkerville, Nevada — about 80 miles (129 kilometers) northeast of Las Vegas — is part of his tour of national monuments being scrutinized by the Trump administration.

Trump announced the review of 27 monuments in May, saying the designations imposed by previous presidents amounted to a massive federal land grab. Monument designations protect federal land from energy development and other activities.

Zinke plans the stop in Bunkerville ahead of visits Monday to the nearby Gold Butte and Basin and Range national monuments, which cover a combined 1,500 square miles (3,885 sq. kilometers) — more than twice the size of Delaware.

Gold Butte is the grazing area at the center of the cattle round-up and armed standoff in April 2014 involving Bundy and federal land management agents.

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Bundy supporter Burleson sentenced to 68 years in prison

Gregory Burleson, a member of Arizona militia groups who participated in the 2014 armed standoff in Bunkerville, was sentenced Wednesday to more than 68 years in federal prison.

Burleson, 53, was photographed with a long gun during the standoff, moving around the sandy wash where federal agents were headquartered. The Bureau of Land Management was in Bunkerville to carry out a court order to round up rancher Cliven Bundy’s cattle from public lands. The operation was unsuccessful after hundreds of protesters, many armed, descended on the small rancher town in southwest Nevada.

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Bundy Ranch Trial 2 – Steven Stewart, Eric Parker, Scott Drexler and Ricky Lovline

As this Second Trial goes forward with the changes including Side Bar conferences for objections to Jury Questions, much is being done on the record out of the view of the defendants, the public, and the media. We will be trying to get and archive in one place the daily minutes and unofficial transcripts as they become available.

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Review of Nevada’s national monuments chills legislator

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is expected in Nevada soon to review two national monuments here, but the Democratic congressman who represents the area said he feels left out of the process.

At a press conference in Las Vegas on Friday, Rep. Ruben Kihuen called it “highly disrespectful” for Zinke not to tell him about his upcoming visit or respond to a letter the congressman sent to Zinke’s office a week ago about the ongoing national monuments review.

President Donald Trump has ordered Zinke to scrutinize 22 monuments created by presidential decree since Jan. 1, 1996, to determine if the designations should be scaled back or eliminated to allow more public use and economic development. Five marine national monuments in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans are also under review.

During a June 26 stop in Pahrump, Zinke promised to return to Nevada in July to talk to local stakeholders and tour Gold Butte and Basin and Range national monuments before he decides whether they should be reduced, rescinded or left intact.

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Thomas Mitchell: Bundy case judge trying to prevent jury nullification

The retrial of four defendants in the 2014 Bunkerville standoff at the Bundy ranch got underway this past week in Las Vegas, and this time the prosecution and the judge seem determined to avoid another mistrial due to a hung jury by eviscerating defense arguments.

Federal Judge Gloria Navarro granted a prosecution motion to bar presentation of evidence “supporting jury nullification.”

In April, the first of three scheduled trials for the 17 Bunkerville defendants — charged with obstruction of justice, conspiracy, extortion, assault and impeding federal officers — ended in a mistrial. The jury found only two of six people on trial guilty of some charges but deadlocked on the others.

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Lawyers give opening statements in Bunkerville standoff retrial

Prosecutors and defense attorneys gave opening statements Monday in the retrial against four Bunkerville standoff defendants, and presented a new batch of jurors with a question that has hung over the federal courthouse all year.

Was the 2014 armed standoff in Bunkerville the result of a coordinated assault or a mass protest?

The jury heard arguments to support both scenarios when lawyers spoke Monday in front of a packed federal courtroom in which Eric Parker, Steven Stewart, Scott Drexler and Ricky Lovelien are being retried. A mistrial was declared in April after the first jury deadlocked on all counts against those four men.

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Roger Stone Calls Out Donald Trump To Release Bundy Rancher Prisoners

Roger Stone calls out Donald Trump at the STAND Event in Las Vegas, asks him to pardon the Bundy’s, who were incarcerated during the Oregan Standoff. Host Tony Sweet and Captain Ron attended the event hosted by Dean Ryan in Las Vegas. Sign the petition to help convince President Donald to Pardon them at infowars.com

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Opening statements begin Monday in Bunkerville standoff retrial

The first jury for the retrial was nearly all-female, but after extensive arguments between the prosecution and defense last week, U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro restructured the jury to replace three of the women with three men. Minority representation on the jury did not change.

Defense attorneys had rebutted the government’s claims with accusations that prosecutors tried to knock males off the jury. It was not apparent from last week’s arguments what fueled the gender dispute. Both sides had the opportunity to talk to the first jury after the mistrial in April, so it is possible that those conversations revealed patterns among demographic groups.

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Rallies support defendants in Bunkerville standoff case

Hundreds of supporters turned out at a Las Vegas event Saturday night supporting the defendants facing trial in the Bunkerville standoff case.

They gathered at Rainbow Gardens to hear speeches from Las Vegas City Councilwoman Michele Fiore, members of the Bundy family and even Roger Stone, an on-and-off adviser for President Donald Trump.

A trial in the Bunkerville standoff case opens Monday at the Lloyd George U.S. Courthouse, but instead of trying a new set of defendants, prosecutors will begin their second attempt to convict four men accused of conspiring against the government with rancher Cliven Bundy.

The retrial comes after an April mistrial, when jurors deadlocked on 50 of the 60 counts against the first group of defendants in the three-part case. Prosecutors eventually plan to try 17 men on charges stemming from the April 2014 armed standoff between individual rights activists and Bureau of Land Management agents, who came to Bunkerville to seize Bundy’s cattle from public land over unpaid grazing fees.

The overarching theme at Saturday event: The “mainstream media” hasn’t given the Bundy family a voice.

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AG Sessions: ‘I’m not taking sides’ in Bundy case

Meanwhile, Roger Stone — the longtime on-and-off adviser to Trump — is scheduled to speak at a pro-Bundy rally in Las Vegas this weekend to raise money for the rancher’s legal defense fund.

“The Bundy Ranch case hasn’t gotten the proper coverage it deserves and what’s more outrageous is the Govt’s conduct towards 17 men arrested at a Rally in support of the Bundy family,” Stone said in an emailed statement.

The event is scheduled for Saturday evening at the Rainbow Gardens of Las Vegas, is described in a promotional YouTube video as “a benefit for the Patriots who stood up for the natural rights of all Americans currently serving time as political prisoners under the corruption of federal bureaucracies.

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Gary Hunt : Liberty or Laws? Justice or Despotism?

When the colonies severed their allegiance to England, in 1776, through the adoption of the Constitution in 1789, they had to have some form of law upon which to deal with matters, both criminal and civil.  To do so, they adopted the Common Law of England, as it existed on July 4, 1776.  This, then, became the foundation of laws upon which both the federal government and state governments began the process of developing their judicial systems.

What is important to understand is that the laws that they adopted were concerned with Justice.  For example, though Webster’s 1828 dictionary has no definition of “judicial”, an adjective, it does have one for that body that is responsible for that function of government, the Judiciary:

JUDI’CIARY, n.  That branch of government which is concerned in the trial and determination of controversies between parties, and of criminal prosecutions; the system of courts of justice in a government.  An independent judiciary is the firmest bulwark of freedom.

Through our history, there have been legal scholars who stand well above the current lot, in that their concern for justice was paramount in their considerations, and the subject of much of their scholarly writings.

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Retrial begins for four Bundy supporters from 2014 armed standoff

ury selection began Monday for a retrial of four men accused of conspiring against the government when they joined an armed protest with Cliven Bundy on his Nevada ranch in 2014.

Eric Parker, Scott Drexler, Steven Stewart and Ricky Lovelien were present during a tense confrontation in Bunkerville between Bureau of Land Management agents who were trying to seize cattle from Bundy.

The case centers around constitutional issues including free speech and land and gun rights. The U.S. attorney’s office for the state of Nevada would not comment on pending litigation.

The retrial follows a mistrial that occurred this past April when jurors couldn’t decide on the first group of defendants in a three-tier case.

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