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Appeals Court Trashes Obama Administration Prosecution of Nevada Rancher Cliven Bundy & Sons

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Cliven Bundy

Appeals court trashes Obama administration prosecution of Bundys

Government lawyers, accused of ‘suborning perjury,’ lose appeal to pursue case!

Finally, some good news anyone who cherishes due process of law!

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has trashed the prosecution – under the Barack #Obama administration – of #Nevadarancher #ClivenBundy and his sons and supporters, condemning prosecutors for withholding evidence that would have helped the defense.

The case by the Obama administration against the Bundy’s was dismissed – with prejudice, meaning it could not be brought up again – by Judge Gloria Navarro when the prosecution that charged the Bundys with failing to operate their cattle grazing plans legally started bringing up during the trial evidence that should have been provided to the defense earlier.

The precedent is called the Brady precedent and states: “The prosecution is trusted to turn over evidence to the defense because its interest ‘is not that it shall win a case, but that justice shall be done.’”

This case started with “a well-publicized effort by the Bureau of Land Management to impound Cliven Bundy’s cattle for a twenty-year failure to pay federal grazing fees. Cliven Bundy and hundreds of armed supporters from around the United States forced federal officials to abandon the impoundment plan.”

Then, when the Bundys were on trial, “the government began disclosing information in its possession that, under Brady, was arguably useful to the defense and should have been produced to the defendants well before trial. As additional documents came forth, the district court held a series of hearings, eventually deciding that the trial could not go forward and that the indictment must be dismissed with prejudice,” the 9th Circuit said.

It continued, “Central to the government’s case were allegations that the defendants intentionally lied about being surrounded by snipers as a ploy to gather armed supporters. Had the defendants been able to proffer a basis for genuinely believing that government snipers surrounded the Bundy Ranch, they potentially could have negated the government’s … theory. Surveying all the withheld evidence – including surveillance-camera evidence, FBI ’302′ investigative reports regarding snipers, Tactical Operations Center log records, and threat assessments – the panel held that the record amply supports the district court’s conclusion that the defendants suffered substantial prejudice in no being able to prepare their case fully, refine their voir dire strategy, and make stronger opening statements.”

The appeals court found “flagrant misconduct” by the prosecution.

Lawyer Larry Klayman, who also runs Freedom Watch, said, “My client Cliven Bundy, having been forced to endure the emotional distress and physical harm of being arrested and denied bail, being thrown in solitary confinement for no valid reason, denied right of counsel and a speedy trial and then, after about two years of illegal incarceration, had to endure a sham and fraudulent trial, where exculpatory evidence was hidden, prosecutors lied to the presiding judge, and where a whistleblower came forward to disclose that there had been a ‘kill list’ by some agents of the Bureau of Land Management on the heads of the Bundys, is now relieved that this nightmare is over.”

The Obama DOJ had brought charges against Cliven Bundy, his sons Ammon and Ryan, and Ryan Payne, one of the many peaceful protesters who was indicted after the standoff between ranchers and government agents, and others.

Details of the confrontation are documented at

Klayman, a former Department of Justice lawyer, earlier had explained the prosecutors’ actions “suborning perjury.”

At the time the appeal was pending, Klayman said, “The Department of Justice, which has sadly become known as the ‘Department of Injustice,’ is going ahead by with its appeal of the dismissal of the indictment a year ago, characteristically ‘circling the wagons’ to cover the dishonest and unethical tracks of Steven Mahre, Dan Schiess and other prosecutors in the office of the U.S. Attorney for the District of Nevada.”

He said the prosecutors “were previously caught lying to the court, suborning perjury, threatening whistleblower Larry Wooten and, put simply, committing crimes.”

During the standoff, the government confiscated some of the Bundys’ cattle.

Klayman has written about the #DOJ’s actions, in his WND columns as well as on the Cliven Bundy Legal Defense Fund site.

He said it took “chutzpah” for the government to appeal the dismissal of the case by Navarro, who, he said, was “no friend of Cliven Bundy, his family and the armed peaceful protesters who stood down a tyrannical government at Bunkerville in 2014.”

Evidence revealed the prosecutors failed to reveal BLM agents “repeatedly mocking and degrading Mr. Bundy, his family, and his co-defendants in an ‘amateurish carnival atmosphere.’”

Also, that federal agents bragged “about roughing up Mr. Bundy’s son, Dave, and violently grinding his face into the ground” and failing to turn over evidence.

Cliven Bundy argued during the dispute that it was the state of Nevada, not the U.S., that rightfully owned the lands around his private property, and on which his cattle grazed.

The opinion makes clear the #BLM coordinated with multiple agencies and contractors as well as law enforcement agencies and had “strategically placed at elevated positions around the Bundy residence each evening” agents with “binoculars, spotting scopes, night-vision goggles, and thermal-imaging devices.”

And those agents had “rifles with them at all times.”

Bundy supporters poured into the area and, numbering some 400, they demanded that federal officers leave the impoundment area where 400 cattle had been held, and federal officials left.

The subsequent trial which failed was over charges alleging impeding officers, threatening law enforcement and extortion.

“The central pillar of the government’s case was the allegation that the defendants recruited armed followers by intentionally deceiving those followers into believing that the Bundys feared for their lives because government snipers surrounded their ranch,” the ruling said.

The defendants, in preparing their case, asked for government documents about those snipers, the opinion explained, but didn’t get it.

But then the government admitted it had evidence about those snipers.

The court found the lower court judge had the right to dismiss the indictment “to implement a remedy for a violation of a recognized statutory or constitutional right.”

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