Trump gives permit to ranchers whose case led to occupation

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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The U.S. Bureau of Land Management in the final days of the Trump administration has issued a grazing permit to Oregon ranchers whose imprisonment sparked the armed takeover of a federal wildlife refuge.

Oregon Public Broadcasting reports that Interior Secretary David Bernhardt restored Dwight and Steven Hammond’s grazing permit, which lasts for 10 years.

The Hammonds had it revoked after a jury convicted them in 2012 for arson on public lands.

The men went to prison, served time and were released, but the U.S. Department of Justice later ordered them back to prison to finish the mandatory minimum five-year sentence.

That kicked off the 41-day armed occupation of the national wildlife refuge.

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