I asked on Wednesday if the Bundy Ranch trial was postponed due to the government withholding evidence and it appears that is exactly the reason.
The defense told the judge in the case that Tuesday was the first time they had heard of two federal agents, armed with rifles, that were posted outside the house of the Bundys before April 12, 2014.
Oregon Live reports:
That information was contained in a written report that they received from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in preparation for Wednesday’s hearing on disputed discovery evidence.
“Wouldn’t it be important for the defense to know FBI agents are overlooking the Bundy residence with an AR-15?” asked Brenda Weksler, one of Payne’s defense lawyers. “How do we not have this until yesterday?”
Nevada Acting U.S. Attorney Steven W. Myhre said it shouldn’t fall on the government to point out information that the defense may be interested in among the more than 23,000-pages of discovery turned over to defendants.
Myhre also argued that defense requests for more information are being made too late and characterized them as a “tactic for delay.” He said he still didn’t understand why the information is material to their defense.
“That information is in there. They need to find it,” he said.
Weksler countered that there were no prior reports shared or testimony in two past trials of co-defendants about federal officers with rifles posted outside the Bundy home.
Of course, Myhre claims everything and anything is immaterial to defending one’s self. That’s because he’s not the one on trial, but with all the shenanigans going on in his office, he should be.
U.S. District Judge Gloria M. Navarro decided to postpone the trial’s start due to the fact that the defense didn’t learn about an FBI camera that was set up for several days during pre-trial testimony from a National Park Service ranger.
Of course Myhre attempted to downplay the camera saying it was only up for a day, but eyewitness testimony was that the camera was capturing images for up to four days.
The prosecution claimed to have spoken to the person who handled the camera and supervised where it was placed. Mhyre said that the FBI has absolutely no logs of the camera recording anything, something that seems highly implausible.
He said that the camera would have recorded images through a server in the FBI field office in Las Vegas.
“None of our investigation reveals any recording was made from that surveillance camera,” he said.
He called the defense requests “highly improper.”
“We believe it’s a tactic to delay. We’re ready to put on our case. At some point this has got to stop,” Myhre said.
Is anyone buying this? The FBI puts up a camera to overlook the Bundy residence and was eventually knocked over. It was then repaired and set up in another location to capture a stage along Route 170 to capture Cliven Bundy and others who made speeches. Yet, the camera was never turned on?
The defense isn’t buying it either and wanted to know what this mysterious FBI technician could not be called to testify even if it were by phone in light of the fact they are not going to take Myhre’s word for it.
“I’m not satisfied with the offer of proof,” said assistant federal public defender Ryan Norwood, representing Ryan Payne.
Cliven Bundy’s nephew Arthur Scott Sessions said he noticed several cameras set up near the Bundy home.
A football-sized camera with black lens was sitting directly across the street from the ranch, he said. A second camera was on a hill overlooking the ranch and a third was near a gravel pit about 250 yards from the standoff stage. Sessions, however, said he didn’t know if more than one camera was up on any one day.
“We’ve already looked for evidence of other cameras,” Myhre told the judge. “I’ll look again but doubtful we’ll find anything.”
He then asked if a report noting the absence of that information would be sufficient.
“That’s the quandary we find ourselves in – trying to prove a negative,” Myhre said.
Myhre claims the surveillance cameras were not positioned for nefarious purposes but for security purposes. We have heard the drumbeat about the “safety” of agents, but very little of the safety of the Bundy family or their supporters. Yet, we have seen the thug tactics of the Bureau of Land Management and we know the corruption that exists inside that agency, particularly when it comes to Daniel P. Love who spearheaded the Bundy Ranch.
While the judge has allowed all sorts of things to be admitted into the trial that paint the Bundys in a bad light, where are the body cameras of the BLM agents? Remember those? Where is the video that demonstrates how these agents were violating the rights of the people? Here’s a few.
I find it highly suspicious that the FBI would take the time to set up a camera and not turn it on, especially since they went to all the trouble to entrap supporters at the Bundy Ranch by pretending to be journalists, and that footage has been used in the previous trials.
My gut instinct is that there is incriminating evidence that supports the Bundys claims that their house was surrounded with federal snipers outside and that the family considered itself threatened and isolated rather than using “deceit and deception” to draw in supporters for their cause.
All of this should be disturbing to the average citizen whether you agree with the Bundys or not.