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Browsing the archives for the Lawsuits category.

The State of Colorado IS Being Sued by … the Colorado River?

Lawsuits, Water, Resources & Quality

PNP comment:  This is scary! Personhood????– Editor Liz Bowen

The State of Colorado Is Being Sued by…the Colorado River?

Westword.com

The Colorado River is about to have its day in court – and not as the subject of a lawsuit, but as the plaintiff.

In a first-of-its-kind lawsuit in the United States, the state of Colorado is being sued by the Colorado River in an attempt to establish “personhood” for the river and its rights to exist, flourish and regenerate.

 

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Judge fully dismisses voter intimidation suit

Lawsuits, Sheriff Jon Lopey, Siskiyou County

Siskiyou Daily News

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Federal Land Grab Was Completely Illegal

Bundy Battle - Nevada, Bureau of Land Management, Federal gov & land grabs, Lawsuits, Liberty

August 28, 2017

Redoubt News.com

Why Trump Should Pardon Bundys & Their Supporters

Federal land grab was completely illegal

by Roger Stone

(InfoWars) – Last week a Nevada jury dealt another blow this week to the government’s case against participants in an armed uprising against federal agents three years ago involving the family of rancher Cliven Bundy and his supporters.

The jury acquitted two men, Richard Lovelien and Steven Stewart, of all 10 charges against them, and two others, Eric Parker and O. Scott Drexler, on most counts. The jury deadlocked on the remaining charges against Parker and Drexler, and then Judge Gloria Navarro an appointee of President Obama hand- picked by Harry Reid, declared a mistrial.

Navarro’s conduct in the case and her efforts to cook the results of the next trial by denying the defendants any real defense. Navarro knows that no matter how outrageous her conduct the X circuit, the most politically activist liberal would be unable to overturn her rulings and all the Bundy defendants will have died in prison before the US Supreme Court could hear this case.

Pete Santilli is currently the longest held journalist in United States history.

This recent result was despite a concerted effort by Judge Gloria Navarro to deny the due-process rights of the defendants. Navarro has refused to release the Bundy’s and their supporters including journalist Pete Santilli under pre-trial release even none have prior criminal records, leaving them to languish in a squalid Nevada for 18 months and has ordered that they remain shackled during their trial. Navarro has denied the Bundy’s attorneys the right to mount a First, Second or Fourth Amendment defense. She also refused to let jurors hear a BLM radio transmission which features the order to attack the Bundy ranch and refused to allow final arguments by the defendant’s attorneys.

This was the second trial for the four men, who had been accused of conspiracy to impede or injure a federal officer, among other charges. A jury in April deadlocked on all charges against them.

Now, incredibly the Government has announced its intention to try Parker and Drexler a third time! Thirty days after the third “re-trial” of Parker & Drexler the next set of Bundy Ranch Defendants will have their trial, including Cliven Bundy, his sons, and journalist Pete Santilli whose only crime seems to be his coverage of the dispute as a news story. Six other accused, which include two other sons of Clive Bundy, are awaiting trial sometime in 2018.

The four were in Bunkerville, Nevada in April 2014, when rancher Cliven Bundy and his sons rallied armed militia and other supporters to face off against agents with the federal Bureau of Land Management who had come to impound Bundy’s cattle.

The Bundys’ fight against the federal government began decades earlier as a dispute over grazing land for the family’s cattle.

To understand this case and why the Department of Justice is determined to deny the Bundys and their supporters their right to a fair and speedy trial it is necessary to dig deeper into the situation and the involvement of Sen. Harry Reid

The Bundy Family has been on their family land in the Gold Butte area of Nevada since 1877.  This is long before the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) ever existed. When the BLM started changing laws by fiat, many, including the Bundy Family, accused the Feds of overtaking state sovereignty.

One such created law forbids cattle from grazing on Federal land in the name of protecting an endangered tortoise. Bundy Family and friends claim that this is preposterous, and nothing but a display of Federal government gone bad. All of their attempts to redress their grievances with the Government were rebuffed or ignored outright.  The Bundy family continued to disagree and refused to comply, being suspicious of the Feds motives.

Cliven Bundy

Although the facts are still unclear, many analysts are claiming that the Public Lands on which Bundy’s cattle grazed are not only heavy in mineral deposits but are also set to become an oil and gas fracking project.  Gold Butte area was used for exploratory energy drilling and could hold untapped energy sources. The BLM already has a track record of auctioning fracking leasing rights to energy companies. While it might be about oil, one thing is clear, it is definitely about solar. Senator Harry Reid (D Nev.) was involved in an expansion of a solar power project that needed the Gold Butte area to deploy more solar panels (and therefore had to remove Bundy’s cattle by force).

The original stated intent of the BLM and associates was to close off the federal land from the Bundy Ranch and remove the trespassing cattle, not to launch an all-out assault on the ranch in Waco fashion.

Longtime Reid policy adviser Kornze was confirmed by the Senate as BLM director (formerly its principal deputy director) on April 8, 2014, just a few days before federal authorities were descending on the cattle ranch. Coincidence?

In a March 14, 2014 press release, the BLM announced support for “the Western Solar Energy Plan, a two-year planning effort conducted on behalf of the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Energy to expand domestic energy production and spur development of solar energy on public lands in six western states.”  While this press release can be found easily on the Internet, it has been conspicuously removed.  The agency clearly wanted Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy’s cattle off of the land his family has worked for over 140 years in order to make way for solar panel power stations.

Erasing history is a BLM hallmark.  BLM had also posted on its website a document stating that the agency wanted Bundy’s cattle off the land as part of a mitigation strategy for such solar panel power stations. BLM removed it when the standoff became national news.

“Non-governmental organizations have expressed concern that the regional mitigation strategy for the Dry Lake Solar Energy Zone utilizes Gold Butte as the location for offsite mitigation for impacts from solar development, and that those restoration activities are not durable with the presence of trespass cattle,” (Bundy’s) the document states.

The BLM wanted Cliven Bundy out of the 600,000-acre Gold Butte area so the agency could use the land for future solar projects, including one represented by Reid’s son Rory (ENN Energy Group via Chinese government).

Reid has been accused by ranchers in Nevada of using the BLM to control Nevada land, over 84 percent of which is already owned by the federal government.  He also uses this power to pay back special interests, including his top donor, Harry Whittemore, who first urged Reid to have the habitat of the desert tortoise moved.  That was before he was convicted of violating federal election laws by illegally funneling $150,000 to Reid’s 2007 re-election campaign.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (Credit: First Solar Media press release via Business News)

Harry Reid can be seen in a March 2014 photo breaking ground for a new solar farm near the Bundy Ranch, emphasizing that the senator’s plan for solar projects in Nevada wasn’t just limited to the shelved solar farm near Laughlin. About 35 miles from the Bundy homestead in Bunkerville, Nevada, Sen. Reid joined representatives from the Moapa Band of Paiutes, executives from First Solar, Inc. and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power for the groundbreaking ceremony on March 21. “First Solar is thrilled to celebrate this important milestone with Sen. Reid and distinguished guests, and honored to work with the Moapa Band of Paiutes on this landmark project,” Jim Hughes, the CEO of First Solar.

Concerns about the environment and ecology of the federal lands in question were conveniently missing when the land was opened up for Harry Reid’s pet projects with Chinese businesses. This evidence is damning; it shows government collusion between Senator Harry Reid and his former senior advisor who had become the director of the BLM, as well as Reid’s son Rory Reid, the chief representative for a Chinese energy firm that was planning to build a $5 billion solar plant on public land in Nevada.

It is estimated that it would cost around $3 million to round up all 900 of Bundy’s cattle, enough money to have kept the tortoise conservation open another three years. It’s clear the Federal Government was not being honest about their methods and intentions. Either way, they had no business infringing on the rights of the Bundy family in the name of protecting turtles.

As far as the turtles go, later it turns out that the BLM was about to euthanize several hundred of these tortoises in part because of a lack of funding for the conservation (remember that $3 million allocated to the round-up?), and many were actually euthanized by US Fish and Wild Life.  An interesting side note, recent research has suggested that there is a direct correlation between the number of cattle and the number of tortoises, and an elimination of cattle has a direct negative impact on the turtle population.  The tortoises seem to need the cattle!

Because the Bundy Family were one of the last hold-outs, as many of their neighbors had already been forced out of the cattle business, they were subjected to their cattle being rounded up in retaliation for unpaid ‘grazing fees.’

Feds began rounding up cattle with the excuse they were protecting the endangered desert tortoise.  They were not gentle about it either, literally running the cattle to death.

The Feds were illegally and purposefully killing cattle off in the raid, using backhoes to bury some in shallow graves, and load other carcasses onto dump trucks. When the Bundy Family and supporters investigate the whereabouts of their cattle and what was happening to them, the BLM respond by assaulting a cancer patient (Margaret Houston), unleashing attack dogs on protesters, and tazed Ammon Bundy multiple times.

Cliven Bundy then called on the sheriff to start arresting BLM agents for trespassing and theft.  While sympathetic, the sheriff was unable to stop the confrontations.

People started to notice, and people voiced their support for the Bundy Family, many in person. When Bundy started gaining even wider-spread support, the Feds erected ‘free-speech’ zones.

After Bundy’s ‘violated’ their zone to film the round-up, the BLM blared loudspeaker warnings, and four snipers pointed guns at them.  When Dave Bundy didn’t comply, the Feds sicced at a vicious police dog on him and had him arrested.

In order to hide their doings, the government declares a ‘no-fly’ zone over the ranch to prevent embarrassing footage from the media showing the ‘bovine concentration camp’ where large numbers of cattle are being stuffed into small enclosures. The Feds also create mass burial graves of those cattle unable to survive the stressful ordeal of being ‘herded’ by a low flying helicopter.

Cliven Bundy, having had enough, makes the claim that he is prepared to become a martyr to protect liberty and freedom vs. Government ‘tyranny.’

More and more Americans become outraged and gather in support. Patriot and militia groups arrive to protect the peace.

The Governor of Nevada orders that the ‘free-speech’ zones be dismantled, and warns BLM about their ‘atmosphere of intimidation,’ and recommends BLM reconsider its approach on the constitutional rights of Nevadans.

BLM officials agreed to cease their operation to seize Bundy’s cattle after a massive public backlash. Bundy then demanded that Sheriff Douglas Gillespie disarm BLM officials and return his stolen cows. When this didn’t happen, hundreds of Bundy supporters, including cowboys on horseback, descended on a nearby cattle pen outside of Mesquite where the seized cows were being held.

In a tense standoff, armed BLM feds, backed up by at least one SWAT team, threatened to shoot at Bundy supporters if they marched any closer to a line of vehicles. Refusing to back down, the protesters marched straight past the armed men and towards the cattle pen.

Supporters of Nevada cattle rancher Cliven Bundy advanced on a position held by BLM agents despite threats that they would be shot at, eventually forcing BLM feds to release 100 cattle that had been stolen from Bundy as part of a land grab dispute

According to Piute County commissioner Darin Bushman: I was just told by commissioner Collins of Clark County NV that all of us folks from Utah are a bunch of “inbred bastards” and if we are coming to Clark County NV to support Cliven Bundy we all “better have funeral plans”. We should “turn our asses around on mind our own f-ing business”.  Classy leadership for all to see.

Cliven Bundy later claims that he would have been happy to pay ‘grazing-fees,’ as long as it went to the state of Nevada and benefit the local community. But not to the unaccountable Federal government who had been illegally harassing them for years.

Prized Bull (Bundy Ranch Facebook).

If the Federal government were truly concerned about the welfare of the turtles, they would have stopped the development in Southern Las Vegas, not Bundy’s grazing cattle.

Never in the history of America has the government called out snipers, helicopters, assault troops and restricted air space to save any animal… not even the American Bald Eagle, much less a reptile. The U.S. government treated the Bundy Ranch like a Middle-Eastern war zone.

Harry Reid and those against the Bundy Family begin to refer to them and their supporters as ‘domestic terrorists.’

Reid is accused of using the new BLM chief as a puppet to control Nevada land, over 84% of which is owned by the federal government.  The reason he wants this control is to pay back special interests.

BLM has proven that they have a situational concern for the desert tortoise as they’ve had no problem waiving their rules concerning wind or solar power development. Clearly these developments have vastly affected a tortoise habitat more than a century-old, quasi-homesteading grazing area.

The development of solar farms just like this one is exactly why Sen. Reid was using the BLM, whose director is Reid’s former senior advisor, to push Bundy out of the Gold Butte area.

The simple fact is the feds were using the Bureau of Land Management to bully and intimidate ranchers like Bundy, pushing them off public land in order to pave the way for lucrative “green energy” projects backed by the Communist Chinese government and linked to Nevada Senator Harry Reid.

FOX Legal Analyst Judge Napolitano said the feds were forced to back down because they had suffered a public relations nightmare, pointing out that Bundy lost his case in a federal court but that the case should have been tried in a state court. “The federal judiciary should not be deciding what land the federal government owns,” said Napolitano, adding that the feds should have placed a lien against Bundy’s property to collect grazing fees and not conducted a raid backed up by armed agents to seize his private property.

“The government’s option is to take the amount of money he owes them and docket it, that is, file the lien on his property….the federal government could have done that, instead they wanted this show of force,” said Napolitano, adding, “They swooped in….with assault rifles aimed and ready and stole this guy’s property, they stole his cattle, they didn’t have the right to do that, that’s theft and they didn’t have the right to do that, that’s theft and they should have been arrested by state officials”

Instead of doing the right thing, Federal judges, prosecutors, investigators, and more have all done the wrong thing.  At each opportunity where the situation could have been de-escalated, it was instead escalated.

There can be no more clear and egregious overreach of Federal power than is being demonstrated in the case of the Bundy Family. The third retrial of Parker and Drexler requires the written approval of Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Incredibly, Sessions visited Nevada during the first trial and blurted out praise of the prosecutors oblivious to the fact that such public comment by the highest law enforcement official in the nation tainted the trial and could have been grounds for dismissal.

I have called upon US Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley to call Judge Navarro to hearings to explain her denial of the due process for the Bundy Ranch defendants. No person, not even Reid stooge Navarro is above the law.

On July 15th I called upon President Donald J. Trump to review the actions of both the BLM and the Department of Justice in this case and to use his pardon authority to end this travesty and immediately release all of the Bundy Family members as well as their supporters who have been locked-up by an out-of-control Federal government that seeks to intimidate and subjugate through the abuse of brute force. I appeal again to the President for mercy and justice.

Find it at:

Federal Land Grab Was Completely Illegal

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, any copyrighted material herein is distributed without profit or payment to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving this information for non-profit research and educational purposes only. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

 

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Butte County says it will file lawsuit to oppose “twin tunnels” proposal

Lawsuits, State gov, Water, Resources & Quality

County to file suit to oppose ‘twin tunnels’ proposal

Chico Enterprise-Record

Butte County plans to file a lawsuit over the plan to bury a pair of tunnels under the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta to move Sacramento River water south.

County supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to file the suit against the Department of Water Resources over the so-called “California WaterFix,” the largest part of which is the “twin tunnels” proposal.

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Militias, Martyrs and McVeigh, Oh My!

Bundy Battle - Nevada, Bureau of Land Management, Constitution, CORRUPTION, Courts, CRIMINAL, Federal gov & land grabs, Lawsuits, Liberty

Redoubt News.com

August 5, 2017

This has been a very eventful week in the Bunkerville Retrial of four defendants. The prosecution has demonized these good men at every turn. They have portrayed them as lawless militia, anti-government radicals, and immoral propagandists.

by Shari Dovale

I Guess I Was Wrong”

The week began with more government agents taking the witness stand to tell how afraid they were of these gun-totin’ cowboys. BLM Special Agent Robert Shilaikis took some video of the events on April 12, 2014, because he was expecting a gunfight and wanted documentation. He was afraid that memories would fade over time.

He did not video record any protesters firing weapons. He admitted that some of his commentary of the videos was based on reviewing the footage later, not on what he saw at the time. He had to clarify some of his commentary, and his identification, as he was shown to be mistaken during his testimony.

“I Guess I Was Wrong,” he would say at least twice when confronted with his own video proof contradicting his testimony.

Shilaikis showed his bias repeatedly during his testimony, and the defense called him out on it. Profiling everyone as militia based on their clothing was a point for the defense to grill him on. He testified as to the defendants “ideology” and was asked how he could “see” that on the videos?

Special Agent in Charge Dan Love, April 12, 2014

Judge Gloria Navarro jumped in on the bias when the defense attempted to compare and contrast the witnesses statements towards the defendants when they began to question the witness about Special Agent in Charge Dan Love, and his dress of camo, tactical gear, and a black hat turned backwards on his head. After all, they had demonized “Black Hat” Eric Parker over these very points. The theory put forth was that, by turning his ball cap around, Parker was ready to shoot his long gun.

Judge Navarro wasn’t having that in her courtroom and refused to allow the testimony.

Sling Your Long Guns”

The jury picked up on several points and asked Shilaikis if anyone pointed a weapon at him. Of course, he had to admit that they did not. The jury also wanted to know about the order to “Sling Your Long Guns” and whether that was meant for just the BLM or all Law Enforcement.

Shilaikis attempted to imply that the order to “Sling” their long guns was more of a suggestion, and that it was a discretionary order. “Each law enforcement officer can make the decision to put away their long gun based on what they perceive as a threat.”

The defense jumped all over that one and the jury did not seem to buy it either.

AUSA Myhre used Special Agent Willis to introduce multiple photos that depicted the same thing. How many times can you see the same picture and not call it “cumulative”? They introduced several photos as evidence that they did not take, but downloaded from various sites on the internet.

Evidence was introduced from the “Frontline” documentary aired on PBS in May 2017. This brings up questions of how PBS was able to obtain sealed discovery for this show. The court is not addressing this issue, but the people want to know.

The prosecutors do not plan to prosecute PBS for releasing sealed discovery evidence. How about they release the rest of the evidence for the public to review?

Another unusual event this week, when a juror was questioned this week about a text message she received from an outside source concerning this trial. The message said, “You have 2 hours more to finished. Pass death sentence on this prisoner.” The juror immediately brought it to the court’s attention and said it would not affect her ability to be impartial. The court accepted that.

What is an FBI Employee?

A very controversial witness took the stand by name of FBI Special Agent Sarah Gibson Draper, of Idaho. Draper was placed in charge of gathering Facebook evidence on Parker, Drexlar and Stewart.

The posts that she introduced discussed the events, but did not directly show any law breaking.

What was most interesting about her testimony was the dancing around concerning “FBI Employees”. Each time an attorney would ask about an “Agent” she would correct them to say “Employee”.

What is the difference between an FBI Agent and an FBI Employee? Draper is attempting to avoid calling them paid informants. They are employees because they are being given compensation by the government, yet they are selecting their words carefully because of the negative connotations of the word “informant”. Judge Navarro does not want that word brought up in front of the jury, and she is very heavy-handed on this issue.

I have noted there seem to have been at least 5-6 informants referenced in this case.

The jurors are not asleep on this issue. Some of their questions were specifically about whether or not the FBI “provoked” or coerced the defendants. They want to know more about this, yet seem to know that the information is being kept from them,

The McVeigh Connection

Draper introduced a Facebook post of Parker’s that was strategically redacted. They omitted references to the “Miller’s: in which Parker praised the patriots for vetting these unstable people and removing them from Bunkerville.

The post also had redactions that told of the reasons the men crouched down on the bridge as they were being “green-lighted”. This means they identified government snipers that had their weapons aimed directly at them.

What they did not omit was a reference to “McVeigh”. The purpose of the government introducing this vague reference was to get Draper to say her “belief” is that this was referring to Timothy McVeigh, and explain to the jury that he was the “Oklahoma City Bomber” that killed over a hundred people. They intention was to imply that the defendants were either connected to McVeigh himself or at least his ideology.

The Prosecutor argued, “There is really not that much difference between what they did and what McVeigh did.”

Therefore, standing on a bridge in Nevada, where no shots were fired nor any person was harmed, afraid of the government’s hundreds of agents with firearms pointed at them, is not much different from blowing up a building and killing over 100 people?

“We or no one that we know of feel he is a martyr for anything,” said John Trochmann, spokesman for the Militia of Montana. “What would we have had to gain from blowing up public property?” asked Trochmann. “Who would gain anything unless someone wanted to pass some new type of anti-militia legislation?” – ABC News

This was completely misleading to the jury. They have cherry-picked evidence and the judge is allowing this. She sees no relevance to anything positive on behalf of the defense and has ruled it is fine to introduce obscure references and personal negative interpretations of those references.

Thumbs Up

Judge Gloria Navarro has stretched the limit of her lack of knowledge on the law. She continuously relies on the prosecution to give her foundations to admit evidence. She references her books while sitting in court to find ways to admit biased evidence.

An example of this is when the prosecution presented a Facebook “Thumbs Up” as a co-conspirator’s statement. If someone else posts a controversial statement, and you “Like” the post, you can now be prosecuted as a “Co-Conspirator”.

According to the rulings in this case, if you “Like” a post, then you have adopted that statement and taken ownership of it as your own statement.

*On a side note, I personally do not like all of the new social engineering emoji reaction buttons that Facebook has introduced. I general show my protest by only using a “Like”, not for agreeing with the post, but for appreciating people getting involved. I “Like” discussion. I “Like” debate. I want people to be involved. It’s the only way to get the truth to some people.

Bad Acts After The Fact

The prosecution has extended the dates of the “Conspiracy” to March 2016. This was deliberate so they could include information on Operation Gold Rush (Sugar Pine Mine, Oregon) and Operation Big Sky (White Hope Mine, Montana). Both operations took place at least a year after Bunkerville.

The government is attempting to show an ongoing agreement to threaten the government. They are attempting to portray these defendants as being so thrilled with their success at Bunkerville, that they formed a group called “Idaho 3%” and went around they country to wave their guns at Federal Agents and keep them from doing their jobs, like take someone’s property unconstitutionally.

They wore camo at these operations, and carried rifles. They conducted security patrols. All are being presented as horrible behavior, and anti-government. The prosecution, and Judge Navarro, have claimed that the ongoing conspiracy included the defendants glorifying the movement and recruiting to their ranks. By sharing the truth of what the government’s alphabet agencies are doing, they are furthering the conspiracy against the government.

The jury is questioning the government’s narrative, shown by the questions of whether or not these defendants are being charged for Sugar Pine or White Hope? Judge Navarro said that they are, as these events are part of the ongoing conspiracy. So now, anyone that was NOT at Bunkerville, yet did participate in Sugar Pine, OR White Hope, are now considered co-conspirators and can be prosecuted.

Is this for real? Only in Gloria Navarro’s courtroom.

Is the Militia Illegal?

When the questioning is completed by the attorneys, the jurors are given the option of asking the witness questions. After the questions are written down and turned over to the judge, she calls a sidebar in which all of the attorneys go behind a wall and discuss these questions before asking them of the witness.

On this particular day, Navarro allowed the jury to go to lunch while the attorneys discussed the questions in the courtroom. This was notable because the gallery audience could now hear the questions and discussion.

One of the questions was “Are Militias Illegal?” The prosecution went so far as to argue, “Yes, they are illegal in many states, including Montana.”

Second Amendment to the US Constitution:

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

Constitution of Montana — Article VI — THE EXECUTIVE

Section 13. Militia. (1) The governor is commander-in-chief of the militia forces of the state, except when they are in the actual service of the United States. He may call out any part or all of the forces to aid in the execution of the laws, suppress insurrection, repel invasion, or protect life and property in natural disasters.
(2) The militia forces shall consist of all able-bodied citizens of the state except those exempted by law.

This is the false narrative that the government is using against these defendants. Militias are NOT illegal. It is in the Constitution and they are important to our Nation.

Martyrs

These men were prepared to be martyrs on April 12, 2014. This was evidenced by a video from Steven Stewart taken that day. In it, he states that, “They were threatening us with chemicals earlier, to back down. So we pushed forward. They couldn’t gas us. We were going to be martyrs if they wanted to continue this.” Stewart said on the video.

Conclusion

This entire trial is based on false evidence. They have thrown out the rules of evidence and denied the basic rights guaranteed by our Constitution and Bill of Rights.

Every American should be upset by what is happening in Judge Navarro’s courtroom. If the government is allowed to proceed, and get away with, this mockery of justice, what will stop them from treating every other American the same way.

The prosecution is expected to rest their case on Monday, August 7th. The defense is then expected to take about a week to present their evidence, with the jury receiving the case for deliberations after that.

The target date for the next trial to begin is September 18, 2017. The jury questionnaires were mailed to prospective jurors last week.

Please support our coverage of your rights. Donate here: paypal.me/RedoubtNews

Militias, Martyrs and McVeigh, Oh My!

 

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, any copyrighted material herein is distributed without profit or payment to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving this information for non-profit research and educational purposes only. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

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California prepares to sue Trump administration

Lawsuits

Sac Bee.com

August 5, 2017

WASHINGTON

California is poised to sue the Trump administration over the president’s latest attempt to punish jurisdictions tagged by the Justice Department as “sanctuary cities” that harbor undocumented immigrants, according to two sources close to the case.

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra — in conjunction with other California city and county attorneys — is considering charging the Justice Department with violating the Constitution by threatening to take crime-fighting funds away from cities and states that do not fully cooperate with federal immigration agents, according to those sources.

“The cities and states affected by these provisions have strong arguments to make in court that these conditions are illegal,” said a former Justice Department official familiar with California officials’ thinking. “If Congress wanted these requirements to be part of the grant funding decision, they would have written it into the law.”

California’s concern stems from an announcement last month by U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who warned that jurisdictions that do not assist federal immigration agents seeking to deport undocumented immigrants would no longer get funding from the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant.

THE CITIES AND STATES AFFECTED BY THESE PROVISIONS HAVE STRONG ARGUMENTS TO MAKE IN COURT THAT THESE CONDITIONS ARE ILLEGAL.

Former Department of Justice official

California was allocated nearly $18 million under that program in Fiscal 2017. To get future grants, municipalities will have to allow federal immigration agents access to detention facilities, and provide 48-hours notice before they release inmates who are wanted by federal authorities on suspicion of being in the country illegally.

Those familiar with Becerra’s thinking say he’d argue that Congress, not the executive branch, has power to set conditions on the grant money.

Becerra, a Democrat, could still change his mind, one source cautioned.

Becerra has not been at the forefront of the fight with Washington over sanctuary cities. While California leads the nation in the number of undocumented immigrants, and its Democratic-dominated state legislature is moving to pass a so-called “sanctuary state” bill, the attorney general has left leadership on the issue to smaller states, including Washington State and Hawaii, which won high-profile suits against the Trumpadministration’s travel ban against six Muslim-majority countries.

Gil Duran, a Democratic strategist in California, said now is the time for officials to demonstrate “bold leadership and stand up for their highest values.”

“As a Californian, as a Latino and as the attorney general of the most populous state in the country, it is well within his scope of duty to do this,” said Duran, who has worked for some of the state’s top politicians, including Gov. Jerry Brown and U.S. Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris of California.

“Becerra is a guy who spent years in Washington and knows the law and he would be a very formidable opponent to Donald Trump and Jeff Sessions,” Duran said.

AS A CALIFORNIAN, AS A LATINO AND AS THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE MOST POPULACE STATE IN THE COUNTRY, IT IS WELL WITHIN HIS SCOPE OF DUTY TO DO THIS.

Gil Duran, Democratic strategist

In April, the courts blocked Trump from implementing a broad executive order stripping a wide swath of federal funding from cities and states that don’t cooperate with federal immigration agents. U.S. District Judge William H. Orrick III, an appointee of former President Barack Obama, said Trump’s Jan. 25 executive order was unconstitutional.

In this latest attempt, the administration took a much more narrow approach, specifically targeting the justice assistance grants. This is the issue Becerra is considering.

Bill Lockyer, a former attorney general in California, told McClatchy in an interview Friday that Becerra’s office generally takes a “very deep dive into the legal issues.”

“There are some instances where a connection between federal money and local policy has allowed the federal government to win those disputes,” he said. “And there are other examples where the federal government overreached and ultimately was prevented from that compulsion.”

If Becerra takes action, Lockyer said likeminded states could come together and discuss who has the resources and who has the greater exposure to the impact of the federal policy.

“For California, because we have the largest legal office in the country, that often causes other states to rely on us to provide leadership because we can actually finance the fight,” he said.

Cadelago reported from California.

http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/article165519622.html#becerrakillingmiddleclass

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, any copyrighted material herein is distributed without profit or payment to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving this information for non-profit research and educational purposes only. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

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Point Reyes National Seashore suit ends with settlement

Federal gov & land grabs, Lawsuits, Liberty

Western Livestock Journal

wlj, 07-24-2017 » Page 1

PRNS suit ends with settlement

— Ranching can continue — for now

A settlement agreement was announced July 12 in a dispute about the future of ranching at the Point Reyes National Seashore (PRNS) near San Francisco, CA. The agreement gives beef and dairy producers at least a temporary reprieve and the ability to continue operating their mostly organic businesses.

The suit was filed in February 2016 by environmental special interest groups against the National Park Service (NPS) as it was moving forward with a Ranch Comprehensive Management Plan/Environmental Assessment (RCMP) for the six dairies and 18 beef ranches that ranch on the peninsula.

The plaintiffs, which include the Resource Institute, Center for Biological Diversity and Western Watersheds Project, challenged the RCMP alleging that NPS was moving forward without conducting adequate environmental studies. They also claimed lack of public input and that ranchers were being given special treatment.

Joining the NPS and PRNS Superintendent Cicely Muldoon as intervenors in the case were members of the Point Reyes Seashore Ranchers Association (PRSRA). In a statement, PRSRA said its members signed onto the case as individuals rather than an association.

Terms of the case require the NPS to proceed with a General Management Plan (GMP) amendment rather than one focused specifically on ranching. Terms of the settlement stipulate that an environmental impact study (EIS) be completed and a new plan issued within four years of the date the agreement is accepted by the U.S. District Court. The process requires public comment on the proposed policies and priorities of the park.

Melanie Gunn, PRNS outreach coordinator, told WLJ that the GMP amendment will be prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act and a public planning process that will involve park ranchers.” She added that although the NPS will terminate the RCMP process, some of the information developed through that process can and will be adapted for use in the GMP amendment.

Details about the lawsuit and planning process are available online at http://tinyurl.com/PRNS-Plan.

The EIS must consider action alternatives including; a no ranching alternative; no dairy ranching; and a reduced ranching alternative. The NPS may also consider other action alternatives. Those actions could include agricultural diversification, increased operational flexibility, the promotion of sustainable operational practices and succession planning.

Acting PRNS Superintendent Steve Meitz said of the settlement, “We are pleased that park ranchers, local government, environmental groups, and the park were able to come together and agree to move forward on this important topic. This approach initiates a comprehensive, robust, and durable planning process to define future uses of these lands managed by the park while providing interim stability and authorizations for park ranchers during the new planning process.”

An area of particular concern for the livestock and dairy producers was the length of leases. Historically, producers held fiveyear leases, however during the RCMP process those leases were reduced to one-year renewals; the settlement will allow interim five-year lease renewals during the review period. Ranchers had sought 20-year lease renewals in an attempt to provide more certainty and long-term planning for their operations.

David Evans, a fourth generation organic and grass-fed beef rancher in the PRNS and CEO of Marin Sun Farms, said, “I am encouraged that the ranchers, the plaintiffs, and the National Park Service have come together on a settlement that sets the stage for much needed long-term planning in the Point Reyes National Seashore.”

He continued, “Today, my ranch provides habitat for several threatened California native species including the California red-legged frog, is home to several native grasses, and provides pastoral habitat for an extremely diverse ecosystem.

Issuing five-year leases, while still too short-term to truly secure the viability of small scale ranching, is a step in the right direction towards long-term security for the families who, for generations, have made their livelihood growing food for our community and maintaining habitat for wild species here in the Seashore.”

Evans said he is also pleased that the agreement requires a GMP. “We look forward to the support of the general public through the review period of the planning process, and to securing at least 20-year leases after this planning phase, thereby confirming the critical role that ranching plays in maintaining our thriving and beautiful working landscape.”

Tule elk

The settlement also addresses management of tule elk. The elk herd is often in conflict with ranchers by eating forage and destroying fences. The settlement says NPS will “preserve and manage tule elk at the Seashore under its lawful authority, and shall endeavor to use non-lethal management techniques to manage the population of the Drakes Beach herd.”

The Drakes Beach herd is a free-ranging group, considered a subherd of the Limantour Beach herd which was established after elk from the Tomales Elk Preserve were released in 1998.

The preserve is a 2,600-acre fenced enclosure where the species, which was thought to be extinct, was reestablished in the 1970s.

Historical overview

The PRNS was created in 1962 with the intent of preserving the livestock operations that had inhabited that area of the seashore for several generations, and to help prevent urban encroachment from nearby San Francisco.

The agreement at that time provided that the NPS would purchase the land from existing farmers and ranchers and lease it back to the original owner for 25 years or the lifetime of the owner. Since that time a few lifetime leases are still in place with the others replaced with short-term leases that are renewed every five to 10 years.

CCA support

The California Cattlemen’s Association (CCA), although not directly involved in the lawsuit has been following the case and was pleased with the settlement agreement. Although most of the ranchers that would be impacted by the decision are members of the PRSRA, many are also members of CCA.

Kirk Wilbur, CCA director of government affairs, told WLJ that PRNS is expected to begin the GMP amendment process this fall. As that process moves forward CCA will be involved with the scoping process and in talks with the acting park superintendent, and subsequently, the superintendent, when named. Wilbur said, CCA wants to have input to “make sure that ranching remains an active part of the environment at Point Reyes National Seashore.” — Rae Price, WLJ editor

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, any copyrighted material herein is distributed without profit or payment to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving this information for non-profit research and educational purposes only. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

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Albuquerque Tea Party granted tax-exempt status after 8 years

Lawsuits, TEA Party

 

It’s taken nearly eight years, but the Internal Revenue Service finally granted tax-exempt status to a Tea Party group in what lawyers representing the group on Wednesday called a “major victory for free speech.”

Graham Bartlett, president of the local Tea Party, said he was informed about a month ago that the group’s request was going through, The Albuquerque Journal reported.

The group filed its request in December 2009. Several months later, the IRS demanded more documentation concerning the organization’s activities. The group complied, but then the IRS requested even more documentation. The Tea Party provided more than 1,000 pages of documentation about the group’s activities. Eventually, it filed a lawsuit against the IRS.

“What I understand is the IRS was targeting any organization that had the name ‘Tea Party’ in it or the word ‘conservative,'” Bartlett said. “We weren’t the only ones.”

In 2012, the American Center for Law and Justice, or ACLJ, filed a lawsuit against the IRS on behalf of the Albuquerque Tea Party as well as other conservative groups whose requests for tax-exempt status seemed to be put on hold during the Obama administration.

“The ACLJ is pleased to announce that after a long, arduous legal battle, our client, the Albuquerque Tea Party, has finally received their tax-exempt status – nearly eight years after originally filing their 501(c)(4) application,” the organization said in a statement on its website Wednesday. “This is a major victory for free speech.”

“The widespread and coordinated attacks against conservative groups like the Albuquerque Tea Party began in early 2010,” the ACLJ said. “The IRS literally took their money and then ignored their application requesting tax-exempt status for eight long years.

“This is outrageous,” the group said. “No organization should ever be forced to wait that long for a determination.”

‘This is outrageous.’

– ACLJ, in a statement

In 2015, a bipartisan review from the U.S. Senate’s Finance Committee found management flaws at the IRS contributed to a “dysfunctional culture” that allowed agents to mistreat conservative groups when they applied for tax-exempt status.

Both Bartlett and Moore said that since President Trump and the Republicans assumed power in Washington in January, there seems to have been a change toward a more equitable policy at the IRS.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2017/07/20/albuquerque-tea-party-granted-tax-exempt-status-after-8-years.html

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, any copyrighted material herein is distributed without profit or payment to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving this information for non-profit research and educational purposes only. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

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LaVoy Finicum shooting: FBI agent indicted for alleged false statements

Bundy Battle - Nevada, Bureau of Land Management, Constitution, CORRUPTION, Courts, CRIMINAL, LaVoy Finicum, LAWS or law, Lawsuits, Liberty
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WOLF: Oregon Cattlemen elect to sue feds

Agriculture, Lawsuits, Wolves

Western Livestock Journal

wlj, 06-19-2017 » Page 1

Oregon Cattlemen elect to sue feds

At a mid-year meeting held in Pendleton on June 2, members of the Oregon Cattlemen’s Association (OCA) voted to move forward with a plan to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) over their continued failure to remove gray wolves from the federal endangered species list in portions of the state. While originally intended as a joint effort across all three West Coast states, Oregon is the only state currently moving forward with the suit.

Specifically, the planned lawsuit targets a 2013 proposed rule change by USFWS, in which they recommended removing the gray wolf from the endangered species list nationwide. While USFWS did find that wolves had recovered sufficiently in the U.S. to warrant delisting, the proposal quickly became mired in environmental lawsuits over wolves in the western Great Lakes region.

Except for Wyoming, where wolves were delisted earlier this year, wolves remain under protected status in much of the U.S., including portions of Oregon, Washington and all of California, despite the 2013 recommendation. In Oregon, wolves remain under federal protection west of Highway 395, roughly two-thirds of the state.

According to OCA Executive Director Jerome Rosa, OCA members felt that this limbo has continued for far too long. “Nobody wants to sue,” says Rosa. “Unfortunately, that’s what you have to do to get action. Our members have been living patiently with wolves for a long time. They have tried hard and abided by the law, and we felt like this was the responsible thing to do at this time.”

According to Johanna Talcott, a lawyer with the Pacific Legal Fund (PLF), which intends to represent OCA, the case, from a legal standpoint, is clear. “Under the ESA, when the service issues a proposal, they have 12 months to publish a final rule,” she explains. “To me, this is not a very complicated issue.”

For neighboring states, however, the issue is considerably less clear cut. According to Rosa, the plan to sue was originally conceived last year, through the combined efforts of members of the OCA as well as the Washington Cattlemen’s Association (WCA). However, while WCA members were present at the Oregon meeting, that group has indicated that they would rather not take part in the suit. Similarly, members of the California Cattlemen’s Association (CCA), also in attendance in Oregon, have indicated that they do not intend to take part in the suit at this time.

“At this time, we are not contemplating joining the suit,” says CCA director of government affairs Kirk Wilbur. While strongly in favor of delisting wolves, Wilbur indicates that CCA prefers to give the fledgling Trump administration a chance to address the issue on their own.

“We know that we have a sympathetic administration,” he says. “We want to give them time to act to delist the wolf in accordance with the proposed rulemaking that began in 2013. If they ultimately fail to move forward on that, then maybe down the line, litigation is an option. But I don’t think that right now is the appropriate time to employ that strategy.”

Additionally, says Wilbur, his organization is already involved in a similar lawsuit to delist wolves at the state level, as a hedge against the expected federal delisting. “We suspect that, ultimately, the gray wolf will be delisted federally,” he says. “The issue then is that wolves are still completely protected within California. We’re focusing our efforts there.”

Ethan Lane, executive director of the Public Lands Council, has also expressed concerns regarding the timing of the suit. “We like what we’ve heard from (USFWS) on their path forward for delisting so far,” Lane says of the PLC. “Given the fact that there is not a new director or any senior staff in place yet, we’re inclined to let that play out before we go to the legal system.”

“However, we always want to be careful to respect the decision of any of our state affiliates to choose the path that is best for them,” he adds.

Citing the recent delisting of wolves in Wyoming as an encouraging sign, Lane indicates that much is resting on the pending court decision in the upper Great Lakes, where wolves were returned to the ESA list following a court order in 2014.

“The court case that is pending there is really the lynchpin of the whole issue,” says Lane. “I think that everyone is waiting with baited breath for the appeals court to rule on that.”

WCA president Tyler Cox also does not think that USFWS is likely to move prior to the great lakes decision, pointing out further cause for his state to question the timing of the suit.

“Once that 60 day notice is filed, that tool is done,” he says. “To me, that’s using up one of our major pieces of ammunition before we’re in range of anything.”

Ironically, a potentially favorable administration is also a major factor in OCA’s decision to go ahead with the lawsuit.

“We are obviously concerned that, following the 2018 elections, the political atmosphere may change,” says Rosa. “It takes a while for this process to move forward. To take advantage of the current favorable atmosphere, we felt like we should go ahead and move at this time.”

In order to start the process, a 60-day notice of intent to sue must be filed with the federal government, a step that Talcott says will occur sometime this week. According to Talcott, PLF feels that USFWS is unlikely to move soon without some pressure. “We have to initiate these lawsuits to get them to move,” she says. “They don’t act without a little bit of prodding.”

“There’s several different strategies in place here,” says Rosa. “Different folks have different thoughts and ideas on what the best time is. We felt like the pros outweighed the cons, and that’s why we decided to move forward at this time.” — Jason Campbell, WLJ correspondent

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, any copyrighted material herein is distributed without profit or payment to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving this information for non-profit research and educational purposes only. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

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