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Malheur standoff figure Duane Ehmer sentenced to prison

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - One of the men convicted in the second trial involving occupiers of an Oregon wildlife refuge has been sentenced to a year and a day in federal prison.

Duane Ehmer of Irrigon was found guilty in March of depredation of government property - for digging a trench on the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. At Thursday's sentencing, Ehmer said he dug the hole for protection, fearing the government was about to violently storm the refuge.

But U.S. District Judge Anna Brown said Ehmer was trespassing, so there was no reasonable excuse for damaging property that also contained artifacts important to the Burns Paiute Tribe.

The trench was dug the morning after occupation leader Ammon Bundy and other key figures were arrested. Bundy and six co-defendants were found not guilty in a separate trial.


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