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Bundy family assembles legal team, slams Nevada governor

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 08:55 a.m. HST, May 14, 2014

LAS VEGAS » The family of a southern Nevada rancher caught up in a showdown with federal authorities over grazing on public lands says it is assembling a team of legal advisers to consider options.

A statement issued Tuesday by Cliven Bundy's family said any action it pursues will focus on protecting individual rights and restoring constitutional principles.

It also takes issue with Gov. Brian Sandoval and Clark County Sheriff Douglas Gillespie for not investigating the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. Two weeks ago, about two dozen family members and other Bundy supporters filed reports with the sheriff's office alleging crimes by federal agents against people protesting the roundup of cattle from public land.

"Our governor and sheriff should have been our heroes, but yet they remain corrupted," the statement said.

The sheriff's office said it wouldn't comment Tuesday, and a Sandoval spokesman did not immediately respond to an email.

BLM officials have accused Cliven Bundy of failing to pay grazing fees for 20 years, racking up more than $1.1 million in fees and penalties, and failing to abide by court orders to remove his cattle from vast open range that is habitat for the endangered desert tortoise.

Bundy's statement Tuesday came a day after the head of the BLM said his agency plans to act through the courts to hold lawbreakers accountable in the dispute.

BLM chief Neil Kornze said during a National Public Radio interview on Monday that some people broke laws before a roundup of Bundy's cattle was suspended last month northeast of Las Vegas.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported that Kornze's first public comment about Bundy came on the "Diane Rehm Show."

Kornze said the agency is committed to working through the legal system. Agency officials said the same thing when the roundup was called off April 12 amid threats of violence involving federal authorities and armed Bundy supporters near Interstate 15.

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DemBones wrote:
Welfare recipient on a grand scale. We as citizens, have paid this $1.1 Million for this tax dodging deadbeat. He claims to be American, his actions speak volumes.
on May 14,2014 | 03:08AM
Mediocrates wrote:
They, or at least he, belongs in prison for sure - but these nut bags clearly WANT a fight. They instigate and bring loaded rifles challenging the state - it really is an amazing degree of restraint shown by state and federal authorities with these nut jobs.
on May 14,2014 | 06:53AM
whs1966 wrote:
I am sure he's an "I-got-mine Republican," who feels no shame taking advantage of our corporate welfare state.
on May 14,2014 | 05:49AM
AhiPoke wrote:
While I believe this guy is a law-breaker who will end up losing in court and receive a justifiable punishment, it also disturbs me to see how heavy handed the federal government was in going after him. All of us, even the law-abiding, should be aware that our government's tactics in dealing with citizens is becoming more and more aggressive. This country was founded on the principle of a non-invasive non-central government. That is changing quickly.
on May 14,2014 | 07:51AM
sjean wrote:
What heavy-handedness? No arrests. Not even pepper spray. I find it ironic that someone who doesn't recognize the federal government raises an American flag (representing our union) and cries about constitutional rights. How can he have constitutional rights granted from a government which does not exist?
on May 14,2014 | 08:18AM
AhiPoke wrote:
If you saw the confrontation, the feds came with about a 100 armed officers with guns drawn and used tazers on protestors. Again, I agree that the Bundys are law breakers. What I have a problem with is the heavy handed way our federal government handled this. If you don't have a problem with it, that's fine.
on May 14,2014 | 11:10AM
sjean wrote:
You saw the confrontation? Or is that what Fox news told you? Guns drawn? Is a rifle supposed to be in a holster? This man deserves heavy-handedness when he denies the existence of the government which protects his freedoms.
on May 14,2014 | 11:17AM
hawaiikone wrote:
It's an interesting story, remarkably similar in many ways to the sovereignty struggle going on here. Bundy considers himself a citizen of Nevada, with the state having precedence over the Feds in land management, and in other areas such as police powers. As a sovereign Nevadan, he refuses to recognize the authority of the Bureau of Land Management, and has refused to pay any grazing fees for 20 years. Essentially, he feels any powers not specifically granted to the federal government, or denied to the states, remains totally within the state's powers. Obviously he doesn't stand a chance, as the BLM has clear authority, and his remarks concerning slavery distance him even more from credibility, but anyone here struggling for sovereign recognition can acknowledge some similarities.
on May 14,2014 | 09:39AM
bekwell wrote:
They arrested his cows for eating government grass. The grass was reserved for a desert tortoise . . . which is out there somewhere.
on May 14,2014 | 11:57AM
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